What would happen if his webs just failed mid swing? Well, that's stupid, he knows what would happen, he'd fall to his death. But, he meant with everyone else. The world doesn't know Peter Parker, they know Spider-Man, and that's all they need. But, do they? Does he want to be Spider-Man forever?
He can't be Peter Parker, he knows that. He did that once, and it ended with Aunt May dying, and his friends in danger, so now that the spell had been cast to wipe Peter Parker from existence, he can't be Peter Parker...
Am I too young for this?
Too young to be a vigilante, too young to be thinking about death, too young to be... hoping for death? He's seventeen. He should be wild, and free, not wondering what a bullet tastes like.
It could work though, pretend a mugging went wrong. Or, maybe he should allow the muggers win once in a while, maybe then it'd end.
Without a support system, without friends or people in his real life. It gets lonely. The small, cold, piss smelling apartment is too much. With Lego pieces of his former life, and Decathlon jacket collecting dust. His picture of him, Ned and MJ cracked from throwing it against the wall, MJ's book she'd given him, Ned's hat that gave him confidence. The picture of Aunt May hidden in a top drawer, with her puzzles and her glasses, and one of her books, stained with tears. Uncle Ben up on the wall, with his cop jacket on the side of the bed, his hat on the wall. His parents picture there too, with Richard Parker's (his Dad's) briefcase and Mary Parker's (his Mom's) handbag. It's too much.
How easy it would be to just... jump...
Peter took a step forward, and looked down. It was a long fall from the former Avengers Tower, though it did have a neat view. He dug his fingers into his new Spider-Man suit, a more bright and vibrant red and blue, reminiscent of his brothers from two alternate dimensions; Peter Two and Peter Three. They wouldn't want this... they wouldn't want him to die.
But, even so, they'd never know. Nobody would know. Ned and MJ - their lives would continue on without knowledge their former best friend and boyfriend were gone. Peter Two and Peter Three would never know either, how could they, they're in Alternate Dimensions. The Avengers wouldn't know either. They'd just know Spider-Man is gone, but wouldn't mourn like friends would. No, they're just coworkers.
With a tired sigh, Peter shot a web and swung off, going home for the night.
It's a bad day today. Christmas was a week ago, it was his first Christmas alone, his first Christmas without Aunt May, without cookies and milk, and burnt turkey, or presents. He's been emotionally closed off for the last week, going out as Spider-Man, without motivation, and reading up on his GED. But, it's finally hit him like a truck, or well, like that Bullet Train that hit him in Berlin.
He was stopping a mugging, and admittedly, he had strayed too far into Hell's Kitchen, but he had that same effect where you start writing, you black out and it's three in the morning happen. The woman the guy was mugging looked very familiar, or at least in some angels, and finally, he realised why.
She looked like Aunt May. Same nose, and long brown hair, same lips, though her eyes and skin tone was different. He paused and stared, seeing her run, and that's when the mugger pulled out his gun and shot.
Two hits, one in his leg, the other in his stomach. As he fell down to the cold, dirty ground, the pain spreading throughout his body, eyes blearily watching the mugger run, he had a grim thought, maybe this is it... and it turned even more grim, I hope this is it.
He closed his eyes, peaceful for once, and it all went black.
He didn't expect to open his eyes again. He was very disappointed. And, least of all to be face to face with a tall man, with muscles, a stubble, and dressed in a red suit with horns. "Daredevil?" He slurred, slowly sitting up and hissing, feeling a pain spread through his abdomen.
"Stay down, Spider-Man," warned Daredevil, putting his hands to the boys shoulders. "Don't get up."
Peter felt cool air against his skin, goosebumps travelling up his arms, and realised; his suit was off. Quickly, his hand went to his mask. Instantly, he relaxed, feeling the latex.
Daredevil titled his head, "don't worry. I didn't take off your mask." He sat down on the sofa, which seemed to be old and dusty, "so, what are you doing in Hell's Kitchen?"
Peter looked around, and noticed the bare essentials, such as a kitchen with food, a sofa, a table, and a blanket, with a lamp and medical kit. "This is a hideout, yeah?"
"Yes, not mine though, an... acquaintances." Daredevil said, eyeing Peter. "So, Hell's Kitchen?"
Right, he's territorial, Peter thought, hand to his stomach. It should be healed by now, he knows that, but it's not, there's a bandage and a dull pain. Damn it, he's not been eating enough. How can he? He's not got the money. "Uh, well... I sorta blacked out, and just ended up here. Sorry about that."
Daredevil fell silent, as if listening in to something and hummed, "have we met?"
"Not in person," assured Peter, waving a dismissive hand. After all, who hasn't heard about "Daredevil", and clearly the guy knows about "Spider-Man". He stood, and winced feeling the pain in his leg, "thanks for the save. I'll stay away from Hell's Kitchen." He moved to the window with a limp, and opened it.
Daredevil took his upper arm, "you should stay, and heal."
"Can't, I have... things," he lied. He had nothing, he just... needed to be alone right now. He didn't die, he should be grateful, but he sort of wished Daredevil had left him to bleed out. His red blood dripping out onto the wet, gravelly floor, and be washed away with rain.
"Are you sure?" Asked Daredevil, warily.
"Yep," Peter assured, and paused. "Suit..." He just needed to get out. He looked over, confused, "where is it?"
Daredevil walked over to the kitchen, and pulled out the suit from a cabinet. "There isn't a washing machine, and I didn't really sow it up."
Peter held back a sigh, having no energy to clean and sow his suit, but smiled tightly behind his mask, "it's alright, thank you." He pulled on the suit, and winced with each move, muscles aching. He shot out a web, and went to swing off, but Daredevil took his arm.
"Are you going to be okay?" Daredevil asked, tone a bit tense.
"Yep. Like I said, I'll stay away," assured Peter. He wasn't going to be okay. How could he be?
"Or, you could swing around once a month," Daredevil said.
"No, no — "
"Yes, yes," reasoned Daredevil. "You got shot tonight, you need a bit of help," reasoned the man. "Stay safe."
Peter stared blankly at the computer. It was old, and he had dumpster dived for it, and stared at his emails, in which he had to create a new email address; PeterParker@workmail.com
Dear Mr. Parker,
The photographs you sent in for the Daily Bugle are crap. Crap, crap. Mega crap. I'll give you $300. That's a standard freelance fee. No jobs. Freelance. Best thing in the world for a kid your age. Bring me some more shots of that newspaper selling clown, maybe I'll take 'em off your hands. But I never said you have a job.
J. Johan Jameson
Rubbing his eyes, Peter sighed. Better than nothing. Freelance, huh?
Peter stared at the gun on the floor with blank eyes, hidden under his mask. He had just karate chopped the robbers hand, making him drop the gun, and Peter webbed him up. He made sure the victim, and elderly man, was okay, and the police were called, and now... he should be running.
But, he's too curious.
Would it hurt? It would be quick, and clean, fast and simple. Would there been any pain before his ultimate death?
The sirens made him snap out of his trance, and he rushed off, and up the wall.
Another ten pictures sold to the Daily Bugle. He can barely keep up with rent.
It's been a month. It was a month of well... a month. He just feels empty. Was that bad? Probably. What's he feeling sorry for, huh? He's more than lucky, some people don't even have a home.
But, do you?
Yes, he does.
As he was swinging, he quickly made a u-turn, remembering he promised a certain Daredevil he would swing in. Well, he didn't really promise, more just acknowledged, but to be wanted almost, it made Peter emotional.
He's not been wanted since November.
He landed on one of the buildings in Hell's Kitchen, and looked around. It was a tall building, and rather barren, and he hoped Daredevil could get to it. After all, rumours where if you called out to him, he'd show up.
"Hey Daredevil?! It's me! Spider-Man! Just letting you know I swung by!"
Nothing, no response. Just the howling wind in his ears. His shoulders slumped slightly, and found himself standing on the edge of the building, then quickly moved back. No... no, he's not going to jump right now. Not on Double D's territory, he might feel some kind of guilt.
Peter jumped and turned, "oh! Daredevil! You... came?" He asked, voice smaller and in a whisper.
Daredevil sighed, "look. Usually, I tell people to leave and stop. But, you work in Queens and you clearly need help... so, let me help you... I've read about your senses... how are they?"
"I can hear ten to twenty miles, thirty at a push. I can hear heartbeats, but it's not perfect." Shrugged Peter, "smell is similar. Eyesight is amazing, I can see little details, such as small dust particles, and I have night vision. Taste is enhanced too, but I'm not picky about it since I need to eat a lot to keep up my enhanced healing. I can break a bone today, and be fine by midnight. Uh, Spider-Sense; means I can sense when danger is coming, I've dodged bullets that way. I can lift about fifty tons, maybe more. I'm sticky, so I can crawl up walls. Yeah, that's me, not the suit. I think that's everything."
Daredevil hummed slightly, "all right. Let's get started."
That's how Peter found himself perched on the rooftop with Daredevil, enhancing his senses. Seriously, how is this his life?
"Focus Spider-Man," Daredevil said, sat atop of a tall building with the boy.
"Sorry," winced Peter, behind his mask, and watched Daredevil.
"Imagine it like a piece of string, expanding, and pinpointing to one thing. Then, you clear everyone and everything else out, as you focus solely on that one thing." He tilted his head left and moved his head slightly, "right. There's a Thai place a block away, seventh and twentieth. Packed. I want you to get to table ten, it's at the left, what gender is sat there, health conditions, vitals, heartbeat, food and drink, all that."
Peter listened, and strained, but he couldn't hear passed the chatter of the teenagers three alleys away - they were fine, just a group hanging out. Come on, Peter, focus... He tilted his head to left, much like Daredevil, and leaned forward, stretching his hearing. That was the important thing right now. Cars driving down the fourth, needs a new tire. With a defeated sigh, Peter rubbed his eyes and hit his ears. He tried tilting his head to the right, and strained.
"Oh! I'm in the restaurant!" Peter gasped, smiling, and found himself sifting through people, then he got to the left of the place. He realised why Daredevil moved his head around; he was chasing the sound. So he did, almost like he was weaving. "Female. Smoker. Hearts a bit faulty, so I'd say late sixties, early fifties? Stomach is growling, so the food hasn't been there for long, but she's eating. I can hear her chewing..."
"Right, what's she eating and drinking?" Asked Daredevil, who was not brimming with pride, thank you very much.
Peter winced, "no idea... give me a second." He sniffed, and winced, smelling the sewers, and one of the teens aftershave. He moved passed it all, smelling a pizza ten buildings over, water and rain puddles on the sixth — there it is! "Smells like... Tom Yum Goong."
"No," Daredevil said, unsure.
"Yeah, Spicy Shrimp Soup," clarified Peter, looking over.
"Oh, right, then yes," hummed Daredevil.
"Lemongrass, chilli, galangal, kaffier lime leaves, shallots, fresh lime juice and plenty of fish sauce. Fresh prawns and mushrooms..." Peter sniffed again, "no coconut. The drink is gin and tonic," he grimaced. "Strawberry gin. She also has a glass of water."
Daredevil nodded, "right." He looked over, "well done."
Well done. Well done. Well done.
That's been the first time he's gotten any praise in months. As pathetic as it is, he found himself sobbing, and curled up, face in his knees, sat in his Spider Suit, as the hot shower hit his body.
When they met up the next night, it was because Daredevil said he had something, the man seemed to hesitate, before handing over a phone, "if you need anything, call."
Peter eyed the phone, and swallowed. It was a black, blackberry phone bold, scratched to fuck from the rattling of keys, and possibly second hand, with one contact in. Daredevil.
"It's for emergencies, okay?"
"Okay," Peter croaked.
Peter sobbed into his pillow that night. He had a contact. Holy shit, he could call someone!
They met the next night. And, the next, and the next, it continued. Peter's ears, eyesight and scent strained, but it was working.
"Where’d you learn how to fight?" Daredevil had asked, in the middle of there session.
Peter, who was listening to a wife and husband argue with fast paced heartbeats about thirty miles (ha! Yes! He's improving!) form where they stood, had opened his mouth and then closed it.
"Stark teach you?" Daredevil asked.
Peter's heart skipped at Stark's name. Shaking his head, breathing weak, he said, quietly, and hopefully, "from watching a bunch of karate movies? And, trail and error?"
Daredevil frowned, "Stark never taught you? Didn't he take you to Germany?"
Peter nodded, "y-yeah... but like, it's fine! I knew what I was doing! I caught Sergeant Barnes' metal fist! I caught that jetway Captain Rogers dropped on me — "
"What the fuck...?"
"Wait, that's not even that bad!" Assured Peter, panicked as Daredevil's reaction. He had dropped the "brooding" emotion, and sounded genuinely shocked. "I mean, nothing compared to that warehouse!"
Peter blinked, and swallowed, "uh... the Vulture... I thought I had the drop on the guy, when he had the drop on me, literally," hey, if he got injured and hurt, the least he could do was make this joke.
"He dropped a warehouse on you?" Finally Daredevil's cold, stubborn and calculated attitude dropped, and was openly shocked and horrified. "Where was Stark? Didn't his fancy suit help?!"
"N-no... he took it off me..." Peter said, shuffling. "See, after the ferry split... he took it back. He called the FBI on the buyers that the Vulture was selling too, and he didn't tell me, just told me not to go. When I failed, he took the suit back. Which is good! Because, I learned! I said, "I'm nothing without that suit", so he took it away..."
Daredevil's hands were clenching, "kid, that's not a good thing! He should never have taken that suit! When he took you to Germany, and dropped you home, what did he do?"
"My point guy was Happy Hogan," Peter said.
Peter swallowed, "uh, neither talked to me... for like, two months..."
Daredevil growled slightly, but calmed instantly, "right... okay... okay, all right..."
"Not as bad as that bullet train," Peter mumbled.
"What?!" Daredevil all but shrieked.
"Nothing!" Peter said, worriedly.
With a weary and nervous sigh, Daredevil said, "I’m gonna teach you how to fight."
"Like, for free?" Peter asked, warily. He couldn't afford lessons.
They stood in the middle of a boxing ring, in a building called "Fogwell's Gym".
("How come you have a key?" Asked Peter, confused, and got no response, merely what Peter guessed was a glare, so he held his hands up. "You’re a deeply mistrusting person... and I respect it.")
"So, what now?" Asked Peter, standing in the middle of the ring, unsure of what to do with his arms. He's never trained with people before. Peter Two and Peter Three don't count, as that's technically him, and they understood without words.
"Now," Daredevil said, "we’re going to see what you’re capable of."
"That sounded really badass," replied Peter, voice hushed in amazement. "But I don’t think the results are gonna be all that spectacular."
"Don't worry about it," assured Daredevil. "Hit me."
Daredevil planted his feet, and tensed. "Hit me," he repeated.
"I could break your nose!" Peter said, worriedly. He's been pulling his punches for years, and recently, it's been getting hard to even care.
"Well," Daredevil trailed off and tilted his head, "don’t do that."
Peter gritted his teeth, "that was unhelpful." Did this guy want to get hit as much as Peter longed for death?
"Kid," Matt sighed. "You’re never gonna learn control if you don’t try. Calibration takes work. Sometimes you turn the dial too high and sometimes it’s too low, but eventually, you’ll get it right."
"That all sounds great," Peter said, "and technically, I can control it. But, I've been having a bad few months, I don’t think you’re gonna be real happy with me if I accidentally bash your head in."
"All the more reason for us to spar. Just, don’t aim for the head. Just hit me."
Peter, after a moment of hesitation, reached over very carefully, and prodded at Daredevil's rather large bicep with his fist.
"Okay," said Daredevil, patiently. (Peter had expected sharp and snappy, it's how Tony Stark was with him.) "See, that was an example of turning the dial too low. Do it again."
Peter winded up this time, muscles clenching, and hit him again, and okay, so it wasn't a normal punch, but Peter had to get his point across. Daredevil stumbled back several feet, and fell on his ass with a loud thud.
"Yeah," Daredevil wheezed. "Perfect. Too high. Definitely too high."
Peter hummed, "I did warn you..." He did rush over though, and helped him up carefully, "are you okay?”
Daredevil gave him a thumbs-up. "Again," he said. "I want to see your strength."
"I don’t like this," said Peter, frowning. "Can’t I practice with a punching bag or something?"
"Oh," said Daredevil. "I didn’t think of that."
"Oh my god, is this the masochism thing? Are you a masochist? Did you make me punch you so you could feel something?"
"No!" Said Daredevil furiously. "And, language!"
"... you mean "oh my god"?" Asked Peter, finding it ironic that Daredevil was religious.
Daredevil flushed slightly, "I'm Catholic."
Peter nodded, "cool dude. Let me rephrase, Oh My Gosh." Peter noticed how Daredevil relaxed after that, and frowned, yet said nothing. Was the guy seriously worried he'd say something against Daredevil's religion? "I’d like the punching bag option, please."
(It had taken a few tries, but after an hour spent in the low-light glow of Fogwell’s Gym, Daredevil was able to sense when Peter landed decent hits on the punching bag, without tearing a hole through it. It helped the man to understand where the core powers were coming from.)
Another twenty photos to the Daily Bugle. The headline read "Spider-Man, Hero or Menace? Exclusive Daily Bugle Photos.", it was a good shot though.
Guns, it's always guns that give him both intense flashbacks and the overwhelming want of death. Seriously, why do they all carry guns?!
But, this is different, it's not a mugging, it's a child kidnapping. Peter swung in, and is not face to face with a gun. Does he let the guy shoot him, or karate chop it from his hand? The sweet release of death is strong again. How ironic, to die in a similar fashion as his Uncle Ben.
Bang! Bang! Bang!
"Uncle Ben, Uncle Ben. Call an ambulance! Someone call an ambulance!"
There's blood on his hands, so much blood. All Uncle Ben's. It's his fault. Why did he argue?!
"Carjacker. They got the shooter. He was headed south on Fifth." The officer tells them, as Aunt May breaks down, and Peter's not got dried blood under his nails.
In the end, it doesn't matter. The kidnapper is shot, making Peter jump and snap out of his flashback. He watched the guy fall, and crumple, and stared up at the face of his saviour.
"Spider-Man," greeted The Punisher, eyeing the dead body, and then the boy. "Are you okay?"
"Y-yeah, yeah, thank you," Peter said, a bit blankly. Why was he blank? From coming out of a PTSD Flashback? Or, from the hope that the guy would shoot him and he'd be dead, yet he's still alive! Why is he alive! Or, maybe it's both.
"You sure? You froze..." The Punisher said, walking forward, yet keeping a distance. "PTSD?"
"Yeah," Peter replied, breathy. Sure, he'll go with PTSD, why not. "Guns and I... sometimes I get a flashback or two..."
"Bad experience with guns?"
"Family shot and died in my arms when I was a boy," Peter said, omitting some truth.
The Punisher frowned, "how do you usually deal with stuff like that?"
"I’d just ninja slap guns out of people’s hands and I’m strong enough to break them. Daredevil's taught me ways how to disarm a few, but we've mainly focused on my senses."
The Punisher nodded along, but frowned. "One, you know Daredevil?"
"Yeah, I got... shot ironically, and he healed me. Swung into Hell's Kitchen a month later since he asked me too, and he's been helping me ever since..."
"He asked you too?" The Punisher asked in shock.
"Yeah," Peter laughed, confused. "Trust me, I have no idea why either."
"Okay, and secondly, you would what guns?” Asked The Punisher, sounding mere seconds away from loosing his shit.
"Ninja slap. You know like wham," Peter demonstrated the movement, a clean swipe in the air, "right in the wrist. Most people drop things they’re holding if you hit them in the wrist. Plus, I only ever do- did it when I was too close to use webs."
The Punisher didn’t miss that slip up. "So you still do it, you just told Daredevil you stopped?”
Peter hummed, "technically? I told him I found an efficient way to disarm people. I just didn’t say it was the way I had always done it." He rubbed the back of his head.
The Punisher sighed, and itched the back of his head okay, "okay... okay..." He hesitated, "come here tomorrow." He then turned, and walked off.
Peter blinked, "uh, okay?"
A black van pulled up in front of Peter, and surprisingly, his Spider-Senses didn't go off. Probably because it was The Punisher. And, a dog. A very cute dog. A brown and white, short furred pit bull, that slobbered and drooled with each pant.
"This is Max," The Punisher said, gesturing to the dog. "I'm Frank Castle."
"Nice to meet you, Mr. Castle. I'm Spider-Man," greeted Peter.
Mr. Castle winced, "call me Frank. Mr. Castle reminds me of my army days."
"Oh, sorry Mr. Frank," winced Peter.
That made Mr. Frank laugh slightly, "just Frank. Now, hop in, we're going somewhere."
Honestly, getting Peter to join Mr. Frank on a drive out of the city had been easier than Mr. Frank had probably thought. Peter happily began to pet the dog, and let Mr. Frank drive away.
There was a small hope, a tiny one, that Mr. Frank would shoot him out wherever they went to. Honestly, he'd welcome it. But, at the same time, he was trying not to cry. He has someone's real name. That's insane.
"Mr. Frank?" Asked Peter, looking up from Max, who was panting with his head on his lap.
"Yeah," smiled Mr. Frank, genuinely amused.
"I was wondering, why did you tell me your name?"
"Well, I'm gonna spend the day with you. And, my name isn't exactly a secret," huffed Mr. Frank.
Peter swallowed, and smiled, "thank you."
"It's just a name," reasoned Mr. Frank, confused and voice grumbled, as if he swallowed nails.
"I know," whispered Peter. But, he has nobody besides Daredevil.
It was an hour drive, with Peter giving Max all the attention and love he deserves, with a few questions to Mr. Frank, such as; how was his night? (Good.) What did you have for breakfast? (Toast.) What's your favourite colour? (Green.)
When they parked up, and got out, Peter finally asked, "so, what are we doing here?"
Frank stood, arms crossed, and patient, "I’m going to teach you gun safety and how to shoot."
Peter visible got nervous, despite the mask, and shifted. "Oh, um, that’s — "
"Look, kid," Mr. Frank interrupted, "if you don’t want to do this, we’ll turn around and go back to city and get a coffee. The best way to stop being scared of something is to know everything about it. Knowing about it, knowing how to use it could help. But, I’m not gonna force you to do shit you don’t wanna do, so just say the word."
The dragging silence made Mr. Frank visibly nervous. Of course, he didn't know that, but Peter saw a shift in his eyes. "Knowing this stuff doesn’t mean you’re gonna pick up a gun and kill someone." Frank suddenly mumbled, "I know Red’s all high and mighty with that shit, but this is a defensive thing."
"When you say "Red"?" Trailed Peter, confused.
"Daredevil," said Mr. Frank.
Peter grinned, "I'm so using that for Double D." He shook his head. "Killing is bad in my eyes, but I’m not as um... high strung about it..." He said, shuffling.
"I want to kill him. I want to tear him apart." He remembers saying to Peter Two and Peter Three, still bleeding and crying, the rain having washed most of the blood away.
He remembers staring Green Goblin down, eyes red and muscles coiled, "No. I just want to kill you myself."
He remembers drifting towards Goblin, murder in his eyes... he remembers lifting the glider over his head, about to bring the gleaming blades down on Goblin with a murderous scream. He remembers Peter Two jumping between them, stopping Peter. He remembers not even speaking, as Peter Two held the glider up, stopping Peter One (him) from stabbing the Green Goblin with it. The pleading look on Peter Two’s face. Don’t do this.
It was a wordless understanding between the two Peter Parker's
"Like, the Avengers kill people, and everyone still thinks they’re the good guys." I nearly killed someone, people thought I killed someone. Peter fidgeted for a second, pulling at the gloved, before finally saying, "sometimes I freeze up, but I’d like to learn. Maybe it’ll keep me from freezing up."
"This is a gun safety class where I’ll pretend, I don’t know anything about you ninja slapping guns from peoples hands." Mr. Frank said, and walking to the back of his truck, letting Max and Peter follow him. He flipped down the back of his truck, so they could use the bed as a table for the weapons Mr. Frank brought. "I’m going to teach you how to strip and put various guns back together, the best way to handle someone using each gun, basic gun safety, and then have you shoot them. Sound good?"
Peter nodded, watching Mr. Frank carefully. He memorised how each of the four guns were loaded and put together, taking the directions well, soaking it up like a sponge. He still had a mouth on him, and sassed Mr. Frank, (maybe he was hoping that Mr. Frank would turn and shoot him in annoyance?), but Peter genuinely listened. And, with ease, Peter took in the information and applied it with ease.
However, Peter's hands still shook slightly when he first touched the gun, despite breezing through Mr. Frank’s little gun Assembly and Disassembly Lesson. The reason was because, there's a gun in a his hand. He could just turn it, and pull the trigger on himself. What would happen? Would Daredevil be effected? No, of course not.
Moving onto ways to disarm someone with a firearm, Mr. Frank kept it pointed away from Peter. "Your best bet with firearms is to get out of the way and into some kind of cover. That won’t be your thing, I’m sure, since that leaves an armed and dangerous person out there. With your webs, you should try to cause a distraction and then use them to take the person down. Each weapon shoots differently and are dangerous for different reasons, so pay attention."
Mr. Frank went through the guns he’d brought, talking about the ways they shot and what was the most dangerous part of each weapon. When Mr. Frank moved to demonstrate how the weapons fired, Peter flinched at the pistol. That pistol brought up Uncle Ben again, dead in his arms, and a hugged "Peter". At least this way Peter had a better chance of knowing how to keep people safe.
The gun safety lesson went similarly to the assembly and disassembly part. Peter was able to keep up with all of it, and with a weapon in hand, kept his finger off the trigger and pointed away from both himself. Are these even loaded? Doesn't sound it.
Mr. Frank told Peter how to hold the pistol, and tilted his body appropriately. "And finally, never point a loaded weapon at someone you’re not prepared to severely wound if not kill."
Peter lowered the pistol and frown at the ground. "I don’t think I need to know how to shoot these... I don’t want to kill anyone, Mr. Frank." He can't go back to that, the near death of a man.
"Like I said, ain't gonna force you to learn, but you never know. It’s just important to know. You just gotta be prepared for the possible outcomes. If you wanna quit and go back to the city, we can."
Peter kept staring at the ground. Does he really want to continue? To learn how he could kill a man? Isn't it bad to learn how to use a gun, when the person using the gun wants to play Russian Roulette with all the bullets in the magazine?
"No, I want to know. I need to be prepared." There's nothing wrong with me. So what if I want to die?
Mr. Frank went through the the different guns he brought, showing Peter how to use each one and giving him a chance to shoot each one. Peter had a surprisingly steady hand. This time, there was bullets. Maybe, he could "accidentally" turn the gun to face him?
It wasn’t long after that, that Mr. Frank and him found themselves packing things up, while Peter petted Max in between their clean up.
The ride back was quieter than the ride there, but the tension left Peter’s body as he hummed along to a couple songs. There wasn’t much conversation until Mr. Frank went to drop Peter off.
"Hey, kid, this is going to be a weird request, but don’t tell Red about this little training session," Mr. Frank requested.
Peter’s eyebrows furrowed. "Why?" He asked, and hesitated.
"You ever been to Germany?" Comes Tony Stark's voice, full of contempt and a tinge of, "I know what's best".
"I don’t really want to get dragged into you guys’... marriageable spat. Did that once, don't wanna do it it again." Peter reasoned, thinking about Steve Rogers dropping a jetway onto him, and catching it.
"We don’t have marriageable – No, that’s not important. Was that thing in Germany really that bad?" Asked Mr. Frank.
"No, not really. I just... didn't have all the details, just that "Cap had gone crazy"..." Peter said, shuffling.
Mr. Frank tensed, "what?"
"Yeah, so he brought me to fight and yeah... didn't really know what I was fighting for." Peter shrugged, "but's it's fine — !"
"It's not fine! That's a soldier," Mr. Frank said. "Jeez, how old are you?"
"Old enough," Peter reasoned. At Mr. Frank's concerned expression, Peter said, "mainly an identity thing, Mr. Frank."
"Oh, right," Mr. Frank calmed. "Red’s going to lose his mind being pissed at me for teaching you how to use guns, so don’t tell him. Let him find out on his own and then call me and tell me about the fit he threw over it, okay?”
Peter got a slight joy in causing mischief, and so he replied, "I can do that! I mean, he’s not gonna be mad at me, and I will throw you under the bus, but it’ll be kind of funny seeing him freak out."
A smirk lit up on Mr. Frank’s face. "I’m kind of counting on it."
"I’ll see you around, Mr. Frank!"
"Hey," called Mr. Frank, making Peter paused. "Let me give you my number."
Peter stared at the ID called Punisher for hours that night, the simple message saying Hi, it's Spidey.
And, he got a response; Frank.
He has someone on a first name basis, and he sobbed again.
Swinging through New York was painful when you was hungry, but Jameson's wage wasn't enough, and he was starving. He landed on the rooftop of a building with a sigh, and rolled his shoulders.
"Spidey!" Called a voice, making Peter look over confused. There stood a man, in a red and black suit, with guns all over his body, and katana's strapped to his back.
"Uh, hi?" Called Peter, unsure. Is he going to die? Those katana's would be painful, but it'd be greate to just feel something. Anything.
"Oh my GOD, what is going ON?" Gaped the man.
Peter blinks. Then blinks again. "Huh? I'm sorry, have we met?" Peter asked, scanning his brain for some, any, hazy recollection of who the hell this guy is. Fuck. Was he an Avenger? He doesn’t talk like an Avenger. He’s way too cheerful for that.
"My name’s Wade,” he announced, bright and cheery. "We should talk over dinner."
The sun was starting to rise by the time Peter and "Wade" were able to wander their way into a 24-hour sandwich deli. Peter had about two bucks to spare, tucked away in a pocket of the suit, and he was about to get a bottled water, and be done with it when Wade pulled out two twenties and ordered half the deli menu all on him.
"Dude," Peter says, watching the poor counter attendant try to haul a metric ton of food into packaged bags for Wade to carry. "Is that for you?"
"Of course not!" Wade said, mask eyes alight. "It’s for us."
Peter stared at him and then at the bags. Him? He's not eaten since... for two days, besides the stale bread he brought from the dollar store, and goop that was supposedly noodles. Someones' buying him food?
"Sorry, who are you?" Peter asked, eyeing him.
"I know I’ve not made much of a ripple this side of town, but you could at least pretend to have heard of me."
Peter hoisted up all four of the four deli bags, and watched Wade hand his cash off to the cashier. "Sorry?"
Peter blinked, "oh! Yeah, I do know you. Mercenary! Merc with the mouth!"
"Exactly!" Beamed Wade.
"Nice to meet you," smiled Peter, genuinely happy.
They sat on the rooftop, eating, with Wade just... talking. It was... fun. There was no learning, no teaching, just... eating and talking.
"Hey," Peter said, shifting. "If I cut off your hear, will your head grow another body, or will your body grow another head?"
"I don't know..." Wade said, mind blown. "Chop off my head, and we'll find out!"
"Won't that hurt?"
"Like a bitch, but it's for science!"
As Peter stared at the left over food - left over food, oh my god! - he found himself... not happy, but somewhat okay, for the first time in months.
"Close your eyes," Daredevil told him.
Peter did. He never argued with Double D, not about training.
"You said you had an extra sense, right? Your Spider Sense?"
"Yep, it’s a danger sense," Peter responded.
"How does it work?" Asked Daredevil.
"My powers let me know when something bad is coming. But they don’t give me the specifics. Not all the time. They don’t tell you where the bullet is coming from; they just tell you to duck. Which isn't ideal if there's a person behind me."
"See, that’s where your senses come in," said Daredevil. "You can do everything that I can do, if you just listen and feel."
Peter felt a sudden prickle in the back of his neck, and he jumped as Daredevil tried to sweep his legs out under him, only to double over when the man delivered a swift punch to his stomach Immediately after. "Ow, what was that for?"
"Eyes closed," Daredevil reminded him, tone tenser. "Listen. Feel."
Peter huffed. He tuned in to the world around him. He could hear Double D's heartbeat in front of him, it was slightly erratic, but steady. He could hear the shuffle of feet on the mat, Double D was moving, the humming of the overhead, artificial lights. There was a fly in the corner of the room, and the buzzing was distracting, and the neighbouring building was cooking up a storm given sizzling of the stove and the clatter of pots, and a block away a guy was singing Candy Store from Heather's and —
Daredevil aimed for the legs again, and this time Peter went down hard. "Where’s your head?" He demanded, tone sharp.
"A few blocks away," Peter gasped out. He heaved himself up, it's been a bad couple of days. He's meeting new vigilante people, and he's forgetting himself.
Daredevil tilted his head and said, "ground yourself. Feel the mat under your feet. What does the air here smell like?"
"Must and sweat," Peter said, nose wrinkling in disgust at the salt.
"And under that?" Daredevil prompted, much like a teacher.
After a moment, Peter said, "leather. And something sweet, like... air freshener. The shitty kind."
"Febreze," Daredevil answered. "Stay in this room. Don’t let your ears wander out of these walls."
It's easier reaching out, now it's about staying in one place. "Right." He took a deep breath and tuned everything back in. The light overhead was humming, the fly bumped into the wall, someone down the street was playing trumpet and — no. Peter shook himself a little. Focus.
Daredevil's breathing was steady in front of him. His heart was beating rhythmically — again, and again, and again, and there. Matt’s heartbeat hitched, just a little, before he swung, and Peter ducked, immediately jumping backwards to avoid the second hit.
"Yes!" He cheered, and then jumped, dodging the leg swipe from Daredevil, "ha!"
Daredevil smiled slightly, "you gonna tell me your name?"
"You know it, Double D."
"My name, is Matt..."
Peter paused, and looked up, "Matt?"
A brick flying through his window, his hand going out to catch it only to be caught by the blind lawyer.
"How did you just do that?"
"I’m a really good lawyer."
Peter grinned, "you're the really good lawyer."
Matt tensed up.
"Nice to meet you Mr. Murdock," smiled Peter. He didn't comment on the fact he was blind, he didn't care.
Matt calmed, "you too, Spider-Man."
Suddenly, his legs was out from under him, and Peter yelped in shock, with Matt laughing.
"Tough day?" Asked Wade, holding up bags of food from Subway.
"How are you finding me?" Asked Peter confused, seeing Wade sit, and hand him a few bags.
"Well, the author is kinda unsure how to write me! So, this is what she's going with! That, and she's coming up with ways to — " He gasped suddenly, hand over his masked mouth, "I can't say that yet. Anyway! Food!" He waved a hand, "dig in."
So, he did.
"Hey, whatever happened to you and The Avengers?" Wade asked, around a mouthful off food, showing off his scarred and blistered face.
"Falling out," Peter lied, biting the sandwich. He felt sick from the mention of The Avengers, but wouldn't stop eating. He's starving.
"Ah..." Wade hummed, "hey were those charges ever dropped against Stark Industries? About the you vs Mysterio thing? With those drones?"
"For me, yes, for Stark Industries, don't know." Peter said, with a sigh.
"What happened there anyway?" Wade asked, confused.
Peter frowned, he had looked up the video after he was wiped from existence, and was relieved to see it cut off before his name drop. "Well... Mr. Stark gave me this glasses called EDITH. I nearly killed one of my friends with it, because I didn't know how it worked, and then made a mistake and gave it to Mysterio, who was actually the bad guy."
"Wait, Stark gave a college kid some fancy tech glasses that had drones and stuff?"
Peter did not correct the college kid bit, but now he could relax; did everyone else think he was a college kid? How does that work with Matt, he can hear heartbeats, but then again, the man has commented on the fact Peter's is unnaturally fast.
"WHAT THE SHITBALLS?!" Roared Wade, furious. "You're... no offence, but a young adult, still a kid in a way! That's way too much responsibility!"
"Really, I'm fine Mr. Wade — "
"Stark's luckily he's dead," grumbled Wade, and waved a hand. "Gimme."
"You're phone, I'm adding my number."
Peter handed it over, shocked. Seriously, the first three numbers he gets are the three most controversial vigilantes ever? Cool.
Ten more picture, more money. He needs another job, he swears.
Peter doesn't do it often anymore, but he should. Go out during the day as Spider-Man, that is. So, for today, he does. He tries to get back into the swing (pun not intended, but welcomed) of things.
As he's swinging, he ends up saving three cats from trees, took a selfie with a boy, played hopscotch with a few kids, stopped a speeding car, and managed to stop a purse thief. But, then something happened.
Swinging through buildings, Peter felt a tingle up his spine almost, as everything zones out. He's late he knows that, but there's a gun, and victim is alive, and the gunner is rearing for another shot. Without a second thought, Peter lands in the alleyway.
"Hey!" Peter snapped, and the gunner turned. A buff man, but easy to take, nothing special. Looks a bit frazzled, and when he see's the victim, he knows why. "Dude, you shot Hawkeye!" He gaped, eyes wide, seeing Kate Bishop - she has more than earned the title. "With a... Type 94 Nambu 8 mm pistol," he said, "random."
But, dangerous. That thing can go off with one move, or accidental hit; Mr. Frank bitched about it throughout their lesson.
Mr. Bad Gun Guy glowered, and looked between Miss. Hawkeye - who was holding her shoulder in pain - and Peter, who was waiting for an opening. "Get outta here, Spidey!"
"After you set the gun down," Spider-Man said, carefully. "After all, seems useless to kill Miss. Hawkeye, there is another one..."
"Dis ones caused me trouble!" Snapped Mr. Bad Gun Guy, aiming his gun to Peter.
"You gonna shoot me?" Asked Peter, eyeing Miss. Hawkeye, who was unable to reach her bow and arrow without deepening the bullet.
"Nah, y'ain't worth it! She is though!" Snapped Mr. Bad Gun Guy, not once taking his gun from Peter.
"Gun Lesson 101; never point a loaded weapon at someone you’re not prepared to severely wound if not kill." Peter said, wisely, before shooting a web to the wall. The man turned, distracted - perfect! - and shot a we again, dragging the mans hand down, the jerk made the gun go off.
He shot another web, and it attached to the gun, and he yanked it away, throwing it off to the side of him.
Mr. Bad Gun Guy paused in shock, and turned to run, but Peter shot a web, and dragged him back, making him fall backwards, winded.
Spider-Man webbed the man up to the fire escape, and webbed his mouth shut, before webbing the gun there too. He turned to Kate, and knelt, "let me look, Miss. Hawkeye."
Kate let him, and watched as he pulled her clothing down, over her shoulder, "thank you, Spider-Man."
"Eh, don't mention it," assured Peter, seeing the bullet. "Bullet's lodged in, bleeding hard." He webbed it. "My webs'll act like a compression bandage, but to get the bullet out, you need this." He handed a vial over, "Wed Dissolver."
Kate took it, "thanks."
"Mr. Hawkeye with you?" Peter asked, worried.
"Yeah, we just got a bit split." Kate said, standing.
Peter "ah'ed", and grabbed the arrows and bow, handing it over to Kate, "here you go — "
"Kate?!" Called a familiar voice; Clint Barton.
Peter tensed, and stepped back, watching the man rush over. He had tattoos, that's so cool. Does he want tattoos? Nah.
"Are you okay?! What happened, I — "
"I'm alright Clint," scoffed Kate, rolling her eyes. "Spidey saved me."
Clint looked over, "Tony's kid?"
"Hi Mr. Hawkeye," smiled Peter, waving. He was tense and nervous.
"Thank you," Clint said, tense. "Seriously, it means a lot."
Peter relaxed, "no problem, Mr. Hawkeye. Happy to help."
Clint looked to Mr. Bad Gun Guy, and the gun, before looking to Spider-Man, "can I repay you?"
"No," Spider-Man said, instantly. "From one... super to a vigilante... think of it like a gift — "
Clint raised a hand, "kid. I'm repaying you." He reached into his pocket, and pulled out a notebook, writing something down. "Your aim is a little off." He handed over the note, and said, "if you want better aim, meet me there."
How is this my life? Peter thought, as he sat on the rooftop, waiting. This is insane.
He thought he left the Avengers behind in his previous life, and now Hawkeye is coming back like it's nothing. But, it's everything for Peter. He feels that familiar sense of dread. He's not felt that in ages. He's not felt like he wants to jump off the building in ages, and here it is again.
He vaguely wonders if Hawkeye is gonna hit him with an arrow for webbing up the bullet wound on his protégé. But, logically that's stupid... or is it? He kind of hopes Hawkeye will hit him with an arrow, through the heart, make it quick.
"Spider-Man," greeted a cheerful, yet old voice, making Peter turn. Clint was walking over with a bow and arrow.
"Mr. Hawkeye," greeted Peter, smiling tensely, standing.
"Call me Clint, kid."
"Okay, Mr. Clint."
"No, no, no, just Clint," he said.
Peter grinned, now cheekily, "all right... Mr. Clint."
"You did that on purpose," grinned Clint. He nodded to a wall with a jerky head, "shoot the wall with your web."
Peter hummed, and looked to the wall. There was a huge bullseye on it, no doubt the Cops would have complained and gotten involved, had it not been for the fact Clint is an Avenger. He aimed, and shot. He didn't get bullseye, but he got close.
Clint grinned, and moved, and raised his arm, "higher kid, straight arm..."
Peter listened, and moved his arm, "hey, is Miss. Hawkeye okay?"
"Huh?" Clint asked, "oh yeah, she's fine." He assured, holing Peter's arm steady, "it's thanks to you she's alive... how did you know what gun was used?"
"I've been learning," Peter said, shooting. "Missed." He sighed, missing again, but he got closer, so he guesses that's a win.
"But, better." Clint assured, waving a hand. "Those webs coming out of you...?"
"Nah, synthetic," Peter said, aiming again and shooting. "Damn it..."
"It'll take a while to get it," Clint smiled softly, "so... you're Tony's kid..."
"Something like that," Peter said, shuffling. "He... I guess... just... eh?"
"He invented time travel for you," Clint said, but didn't say it in a forceful way.
"And, then he died and left me with glasses which fucked me over, and I was framed for murder..." Peter said, and swallowed, "but, yeah... no, he was just trying to help me..." Right? Stark is a good guy... right?
Clint paused, "no... actually, never mind..." He frowned, and looked to Peter, "Stark did that?"
"Yeah, but he was trying to help — " Peter started, but paused as Clint moved to him.
"He should never have done that kid," Clint said, warily.
Peter shrugged, and shot a web, "yes!" Bullseye!
"Great! Now you have to keep that!"
Peter grinned, "right..."
Clint hesitated, and smiled, "how about same time next week?"
"Sure..." Smiled Peter, softly.
That night, Peter didn't cry when seeing someone from his past. Instead, he smiled, as he started up at his cracked and pealing ceiling.
"Ah, Spider-Man," greeted Matt, perking up.
Spider-Man walked over, stomach grumbling quietly, and winced, seeing Matt scowl. "I haven't eaten yet today!"
"I can tell," Matt said.
Spider-Man wasn't bothered about that, he was focused on the woman. She had long dark hair, with a slim body, and holy shit, "you're Jessica Jones..."
Jessica Jones raised an eyebrow, "who's the chew toy?"
"S-Spider-Man..." Peter stuttered, "I-I'm a huge fan..."
Jessica hummed, and looked away to Matt. "You hang out with Spider-Avenger Guy?"
"Actually," Peter said, hand raised. "I don't... work with the Avengers anymore."
Matt raised a hand and gestured, "see?" He looked to Jessica, "anyway. What are you doing here? It's Saturday, the weekend. You have the days off."
Jessica sighed, and took a swig of her alcohol and Peter grimaced, eyeing her beige bagged covered whiskey. Jessica liked to drink, he knew that, but that was... a lot...
"New case, not started. Looked at today, and I'm so not looking forward to it. I went for a walk." Jessica shrugged, and sighed, holding up a case file.
Peter hesitated, then raised a hand again, "c-could I...?"
Jessica handed it over, "sure kid."
The case was fairly simple. Woman working the till, and money's going missing, but she swears she isn't taking. It's all there from the moment she's there and until leaves, she goes on break, comes back and it's gone.
Peter finished reading the file, "so the person who takes over during her break is taking the money right?"
Jessica stared at him, and Matt looked over, confused.
"What?" Jessica asked.
"Well, she goes on break and someone takes over," he shrugged. "Then the money's gone. Right? So... someone who takes over during her break is taking it."
"Huh. Good job, kid," she said. She grabbed the file from him, and quickly wrote down some notes. Jessica watched him, "tell me, how's your networking?"
"Not too good, I'm rather new at this," reasoned Peter, shrugging.
Jessica hummed, and wrote down a location, "come here tomorrow. We can work on it."
Matt grinned, "you care, Jessica?"
"Shut up, Murdock."
Alias Investigations Office was actually rather neat and nice, it did not scream "Jessica Jones Drinks".
Malcolm Ducasse, a black man with dreadlocks, sat at the desk, and asked, "can I help you... Spider-Man?" He squeaked, seeing Peter in his costume.
Peter waved, "hi... uh, Miss Jones said to come here?"
Malcolm eyed him, then smiled, and pointed, "down there..."
"Thanks," smiled Peter, walking down. He knocked on the door, and opened it, "hey? It's Spider-Man?"
Jessica looked up and snorted, "huh? Spider-Man... oh right..." He stood, arms crossed, and waved her hand, "well? What do you know about networking."
"Patterns, high criminal area's — "
"High clustered," Jessica nodded. "There's a location, called Bleeding Fist, just outside Mart's Bar. That's a good place to see; find the patterns; what they look like. Make sense?"
Peter nodded, "sure. W-what if... I don't find it?"
"Kid, you found something yesterday I wouldn't have seen," Jessica said. "I'm so used to men cheating that it had yet to cross my mind. You saw something I didn't."
Peter smiled softly, and flushed, seeing her look to him with a spark in her eyes. "All right..."
Fifteen more pictures to the Daily Bugle, showing Peter scoping out The Bleeding Fists. He hated what it said, and he sighed; Fall From Avengers Grace!
Peter sat in front of Jessica the next day, "right, so... clustered with mainly men, buff, in black and leather. But, they had tattoos of dripping liquid on their fists, and they do drugs and child kidnappings. I can't go in yet, because there's more..."
"How many?" Jessica asked, patiently.
"At least three, as they each had different coloured "blood" tattoos on their fists," Peter said, "I've found one of the other locations, it gets weaker as I look into. I hit the weaker ones, the top dog falls."
Jessica smiled, "so, you know what you're looking for?"
"For stereotypes, but higher up people, suits. They use the little guy, such as gangs, and to get them, I'd need to do some questioning..."
Jessica smiled, "good work, kid."
Good work, kid .
Peter smiled, as he curled up on his bed, and sniffed. For the first time, he wasn't thinking about death. He was thinking about... Peter Two and Peter Three.
He wants to see his brothers again, and he eyed the dumpster dived computers, DVD players and CD players.
Getting up, he began, working the material. No time to plan, just do.
He thumped his hammer, and twisted the cogs, as he listened to a podcast over his phone. He connected the wires with a makeshift soldering iron, and grinned. It was small, more like a chip, not too bad, nor shabby - oh, now it's on fire.
Mr. Ditkovitch is gonna have his head for this. He grabbed the emergency fire extinguisher and sprayed with a high pitched squeal.
The Amazing Spider-Man rang on his phone, making Peter open a tired, and bleary eye. His burner phone was ringing. What time is it? The alarm ready seven in the morning... and, he had fallen asleep on the ceiling, curled up.
He shot a web, and pulled, only to grab a crowbar and hit himself in the face with it, making him yell and drop the weapon. He webbed the phone, and answered, "heeeeoooo..."
"Hey Spider-Man, you okay?"
"Mr. Frank?" Peter grumbled, voice rough.
"Hey, I have a mission for you," Mr. Frank said, as if it was life and death.
Peter wished he was dead, given how exhausted he was. Maybe, this mission will kill him. "Sure..."
Peter knocked at the door, that didn't really look like a door, in his Spider-Man getup. He shuffled around, and looking down at his feet as he waited. He could hear Max huffing, and he managed to block out Frank. He looked up as the door opened, ever so slightly and Peter slid slipped in.
He scratched just behind Max's ears, as Mr. Frank locked the door. Peter sang Max praise, whispering in the dogs ear. Peter could cry, this is the best day ever. Mission be damned. He wants a dog. But, well... he can't... he can barely help himself.
"Sit," Mr. Frank commanded. Max trotted over, and sat. "Good boy," Mr. Frank said, and patted his head.
Peter stood, and his chest out, "s-so? Is uh... are going to... what's the mission?" The dog was gone, and the collider was a failure. And, okay honestly, it upset him and he might, just might be hoping for his death.
Seriously? Max stops coddling and he looses the will to live? Is he that pathetic?
Mr. Frank threw Peter a rope, and Peter caught it without missing a beat. "I want you to walk Max."
"S-seriously?" Stuttered Peter, heart thundering.
"Yep. Hop to it kid."
Peter cried in an alleyway, hugging Max, who panted confused, and was happy to be held.
Sat on top of a dojo in Chinatown, Peter held his knees. It's been a rough month.
(Daredevil and him trained for the last week, and Peter was able to pin Daredevil down a few times - score! - but, then it got hard. Mainly because, what if that meant Double D no longer wanted him around?)
(Then, Wade's been gone for the month, probably a mission, but what if he's avoiding Peter?)
(Clint was consistent. As was Mr. Frank. But, Jessica sticks to herself, with a few messages of; hey kid. You good? which made his day, like the dumbass he is.)
He eyed the floor, and thought; would they care if I just jumped? You'd think so, but at the same time, Peter doubted it. They don't even know Peter Parker.
"Sorry, we’re clos - Oh, Spider-Man!"
Peter turned, to see a sandy haired man, with a large smile on his face. He looked the other up and down. Danny Rand, right... from what Peter remembered of the press talks from the return of "Danny Rand", the man was in his mid-twenties, but sometimes acted a lot younger. The boy could respect that actually. He got the feeling Danny also had people underestimate his abilities based on how he looked.
"I'm Danny Rand, the Immortal Iron Fist. Call me Danny!"
Peter was rather shocked the guy was so... bubbly. He got right into his greeting, not even batting an eye to the man in the red and blue spandex. He quickly extended a hand. "It’s really nice to meet you, Mr. Danny Rand, Iron Fist, sir." He said, rattling off all the titles. "Call me Spidey!"
"I'm a huge fan," Danny smiled, positively beamed. "Hey do those webs come of you?"
"Nah, synthetic. Made them myself," laughed the boy, flushing under his mask.
"So, what are you doing here?" Asked Danny, crossing his arms.
"Just... here to relax," Spider-Man admitted. "Sorry, just... I've never been to Chinatown..."
Danny hummed, and smiled, "I thought you hung out at the old Avengers Tower."
"I-I do," assured Peter, with a sad smile. "It has a neat view. But, uh... sad memories... just needed a break."
"I get that," nodded Danny, sitting.
Peter hesitated, "could I ask you some questions? About your abilities? Like with the Iron Fist, I read something about your chi, but how does chi work? Cause there’s always written testimonies of how it works, but it’s never been scientifically studied. People’ve said that it gives off a glow when they’ve seen it, so I wonder if it gives off a heat or how many lumens it gives off. Oh, and is it really just the fist or like your whole body cause that’d be kind of cool if it was the whole body and really bright cause people would have a hard time looking at you while fight you."
(Danny puffed up, prepared to launch into an angry explanation that the power he held wasn’t some science experiment or some cool toy. (After all, it was an ancient and revered power.))
Peter continued without pause, "can I see it? Or maybe - can you punch me with it? It’s gotta be incredibly powerful, and I’ve never fought someone with a similar strength to me. I heal fast, so I wouldn’t really get hurt, uh, aside from my leg, and it’d be a good reference. I’m also pretty sure the Iron Fist would be cool to see and get hit by!"
Danny’s anger simmered down in the face of Peter’s genuine enthusiasm, but he still said, "this power isn’t some kind of toy." Peter opened his mouth to apologise, but Danny waved him off and smiled. "But I want to see if I can break your webs with it!"
"Sure! And, you could help me with katana's? I mean, I kinda wanna be able to use weapons and — "
"Spidey, I'll do it." Assured Danny, holding out his hand, "give me your phone."
Peter sniffed, and handed his phone over.
He cried again that night, a new friend.
The food wasn't takeout, it was healthy, and Peter happily ate.
Wade watched, "I have a diet plan for you." He said, waving a piece of paper with different coloured pens and stickers and doodles.
He was finally back from his long mission, and had headed straight for Peter, much to the boy's shock.
"I don't have enough money Wade," Peter laughed, eating the salad.
Wade gave him a look, "I know."
Peter froze, and looked over, "w-what?"
"I know the signs of a struggling college kid. Twenty right? Twenty one? No, no... twenty two? Parents kicked you out?" Wade guessed.
Peter slouched, heart dropping to his stomach, churning, as the acid ate away. Guesses at his age, it made him feel like he was trying to guess who Spider-Man was. And, at the mention of parents... he has none... would they be disappointed? It would be quick to see them again. Just a fall from a roof.
"So, I'll deal with it," assured Wade.
"But — "
"So, enough about food. What've you been up to?" Asked Wade, with ease, as Insane in the Brain played.
"Well, Hawkeye has been teaching me how to aim," Peter smiled, shrugging.
Wade's eyes widened, "no shit! He's my hideout roommate!"
"No way!" Grinned Peter, "seriously?"
Wade nodded, "yeah! Dude! I've missed a lot!"
Meditating was harder than Peter thought, channelling chi was easier. He guessed it was almost like channelling sorcery, feeling it seep through his veins, and circle his body, hugging his heart, flooding his mind and tingling the tips of his fingers. It almost went hand in hand; actually it did considering Peter was now drawing parallels between the two.
"You did well today," assured Danny. He was shocked when Peter came to him, and said he wanted to learn meditating today, so they tried it. Peter's good.
"But, I didn't meditate," grumbled Peter. He's always had an issue with sitting still and staying silent.
"It's hard," assured Danny. "Don't give up on meditating, try in different positions," smiled Danny.
Peter smiled back, "of course, Sensei." Joked Peter, though said with respect.
"Uh-oh," Peter called, walking over. "You're in Lawyer and P.I. mode." He said, seeing Jessica and Matt talking.
Jessica looked up, "yeah, just..." He handed over a file, "went missing. Wife's trying to find him."
The information was about a thirty year old man, he's been missing for three days, and the last place he was spotted was in Tookin's Talon's, it seemed like a bar. The man was called Mr. Nathan Mitchell, and Peter hummed. The guy was tall, and brunet with brown eyes.
"Good luck, Miss. Jessica," grinned Peter, stealing the picture, before swinging away.
He was at Tookin's Talon's as Peter Parker, not Spider-Man. Weak, tiny, baby faced Peter Parker. Tookin's Talon's was a run down bar, full of people. Peter grimaced, smelling the strong, yet cheep alcohol.
He finally went inside, picture held tightly to his chest, the strange looks he got from everyone were more than enough to make him hunch his shoulders, as he walked up to where the bartender is standing.
"You must think I’m either blind or stupid, if you think I’m gonna serve you," the bartender says, as he casually polished a glass that looks like it hadn’t been truly clean in years. Gross.
This reminds him too much of Beck, in the bar, the dingy, fake bar.
"Hi. Yeah... Um, I'd like to transfer your control over to Quentin Beck." Peter says, tone tense and nervous, the weight of the world on his shoulders. Oh if only he knew.
"Peter, what are you doing?" Beck had asked, tense. But, now Peter can see the eagerness.
"Doing the right thing."
"I—" Peter bit his tongue, stopping himself from spirally. It was pitiful, and easy to make tears well up in his eyes, as his mind circled the life he once had. He set the picture he’d been clutching to his chest down on the bar with shaky hands. Voice shaking, hushed and whispered, "I’m looking for my Step-Dad. He hasn’t been home in a week, and my Mom’s really worried, and I know he comes here sometimes, and I just want him to come home," he says, looking up at the bartender with the saddest eyes he can manage, and choked out a sob. It’s one of the few times that looking so young had really come in handy.
The bartender’s expression softened slightly, as he picked up the photograph and looked over it for a minute. "Sorry kid, haven’t seen him for a couple weeks." He looks like he wants to say something else, but he just passes the picture back.
Peter tilted his head, much like he'd seen Matt do, and heard a steady beat. He's telling the truth.
"Do... do you know if there’s anywhere else he might go? I-I know he has problems with drinking, and I just want him to come home..." Peter tried again, as he finally gets a couple of tears to drip down his cheeks.
The bartender looked conflicted again, and stares down at the glass and rag softly, and finally looked at Peter. "Frontier. Down on tenth," he said finally. "But, kid, don’t go askin’ around there by yourself."
"Thank you — " gasped Peter, eyes wide and sparkling. "I won’t," Peter assured, hugging the picture to his chest for a moment, before he slipped it back into his pocket, and walked out of the bar, with fake wary looks.
Fucking Frontier, the scummiest of scums to ever scum goes there. It advertises itself as a gay bar, but in reality it was a homing beacon for all sorts of creeps, gay, straight, whatever. The owner’s a registered sex offender, and they’re pretty notorious for not ID-ing. Which attracted dumb kids, who don’t know better. Which is exactly the point of the place.
It took him about ten minutes to get there, and it was definitely the seediest looking bar on the street, sat between a corner shop, and a tattoo parlour. There was sticky, wet floors and people popping pills, and the loud bass of the music, and ew; the predatory look one guy gives him.
Peter eyed him carefully, making his way to the bar. Currently, he has no name, what name could he use? Howard Potts. Good name, yeah that.
Peter vaguely wondered what would happen if the people leering at him, got him. He's already dealt with bullshit like this when he was seven, with his babysitter Skip. Maybe, these guys would kill him? Hopefully.
Once he got to the counter, Peter flagged down the bartender, and reached into his pocket and grab the picture. He slapped it down on the counter- which very well may be stickier than the floor.
"You seen the guy?" He asked, abruptly.
"I’m not playing your game. Tell me if you’ve seen him, and I promise not to get a cop who isn’t in your boss’s pocket down here," he snapped.
The guy rolled his eyes and just flipped Peter off, before wandering away to help some paying customers. Peter grabbed his wrist, and squeezed tightly. The guy froze.
"I don't think you understand," Peter said, growling. His voice dropped slightly, voice like rough nails and gravelly, a mix between The Punisher and Daredevil. "You're gonna tell me about this guy, or ya gonna loose a fucking hand." He could do that, he could pull that hand straight off.
The guy whimpered, and Peter grinned, feeling the bones splinter under his finger tips. "He was in here a few days ago. Had a seizure after he did some bad coke in the bathroom. A big white guy put him in a cab to the hospital,” he said, panting.
"You remember what day?" Peter asked, yanking the guys arm, making him yell.
"Tuesday, I think!"
Peter nodded, "thank you." He let the guy go.
The guy gasped, "who the fuck are you?"
"Names Howard Potts," nodded Peter, grinning darkly. He walked off, and sighed. He needs to track that cab.
It took searching the library computers for a few hours to find the CV footage, and he watched the big white guy heave Nathan into a cab. He watched the car drive off, and hummed, seeing Centre Hospital come into view, and watched as they helped him out.
He downloaded the footage, wrote down the address, and went off.
Spider-Man landed in a crouch, in front of Jessica, "right, so. Your guy went to Frontier, last seen on Tuesday. Did coke, dragged off to hospital by a big white guy. He ended up at Centre Hospital." Peter said, handing the information over.
Jessica blinked, and took the information, "you... figured it out?"
"No, I found him," corrected Peter. "Big difference."
Jessica smiled slightly, very slight, barely visible. She held her hand out, "give me your phone."
He's doing well today. Well, not well physically wise, but well emotionally wise. Currently, he's in a burning building, breathing in smoke, and he has to get everyone out. His senses are going crazy.
As he rushes through the burning building, hearing and eyesight dialled to maximum, he hears a heartbeat. Solid, firm, yet fast... it's not that of a normal adult, nor a teenager, old person and child. A mutant? No... mutate, not mutant.
He rushed over, and paused, seeing a small child, curled up in the corner coughing. It was a split second, in which the wall, a solid brick, and fiery wall, fell. She screamed, and Peter caught it with a yell.
The girl looked up with amazed eyes, "Spider-Man!"
"H-hi," strained Peter, trying to sound cheerful. Come on, he's lifted heavier.
"Hello! Hello! Please. Hey, hey, please. I’m down here. I’m down here. I’m stuck. I’m stuck. I can’t move. I can’t..."
But, then again, you didn't want to die back then. But, then again neither does this girl - great, now he sounds like Deadpool, talking to the boxes!
"Y-you're gonna be okay," Peter promised. "You need to crawl." He said, feeling the weight increase. He was going to be crushed, or he would run out of air from the thick smoke, both ways would be slow and painful, but at the same time, welcome.
"I can't," whimpered the girl.
"Yes, you can," assured Peter, groaning and crumbling under the pressure, when suddenly, it lifted up again. Peter turned to see, "Luke Cage..."
"Spider-Man," grunted Mr. Cage.
Peter shot a web to the girl, and pulled her out, and covered her face, head to his chest. "You're okay, let's get you out?" He nodded to Mr. Cage, then rushed out.
The little girl cried, and reached out, "Mama!"
Peter handed her over to the sobbing mother, who looked to Peter, "t-thank you."
"Of course, ma'am," nodded Peter, before swinging off. There it was again, that same heartbeat...
Luke Cage stood on a building, watching Spider-Man, who made a detour and landed in front of him. "Spider-Man."
"Mr. Cage," greeted Peter. "You usually stay in Harlem."
"Travelling," shrugged Mr. Cage.
"Right, thanks by the way. For your help back there," smiled Peter. "I've uh... been experience some strength issues."
"How much can you lift?" Asked Mr. Cage, leaning forward on the building.
"About 50 tons," Peter responded.
"And, you struggled tonight because...?"
Peter looked down, because I wanted to die. "Just... off my game..."
Without a hum, Mr. Cage nodded, and wrote down a note, handing it over. "Come to this place next week. We'll get your strength up."
"Oh! Thank you Mr. Cage!"
Peter was shifting and wiggling. He was trying so hard to meditate, and it just wasn't happening. Why couldn't he stay focused?
He was trying his best to focus on his own breathing, the rise and fall of his chest, and expanding his awareness. All it was really doing was putting him to sleep.
Danny opened his eyes and frowned at the kid, who was restless and not calm, but not tense, "Spidey. Maybe, you should try a different position? Hmm?" (He didn't really want him to fall asleep.)
Peter's shoulders slouched, then looked up with an idea. "Sensei? May I try something?"
Danny smiled, chest out, preening. Being called Sensei by another vigilante with such respect was an amazing feeling. "Of course."
Peter slowly stood, and walked over to the wall. He hesitated, and crawled up the wall. He was careful to not put any pressure on his injured leg (he cannot let Matt know, so he's been avoiding him), and found himself sat, upside down on the ceiling, "is this okay?"
Danny grinned, eyes wide in shock, "how are you doing that? Is that safe?"
"Well, spiders have tiny hairs all over their bodies. And, each of the small hairs is covered in even smaller hairs called "setules," which have unique triangular tips. These tiny setules — more than 620,000 in all — give spiders their superior ability to climb up water spouts, along walls and across ceilings." He held up a gloved hand, which looked no different then any other hand underneath the spandex, "I have setules. I do a lot of homework on the ceiling because I think better up there. Do you think that might help?"
"Go for it," smiled Danny, giving a thumbs up.
Peter gave a bright grin at the permission, and settled down on the ceiling, he assumed the position Danny had directed him on, his legs crossed over each other, and hands on his lap, palms up. Once Danny settled back down, Peter started focusing back on his breathing, eyes closing, back straight.
Sitting on the ceiling helped far more than sitting on the ground.
He breathed deeply, inky blackness surrounding him, much better. Not perfect, but better.
"So, Double-D, how was your day?" Peter called, as he sat cross legged on the floor, across the ceiling from Matt.
He shrugged. "Same old. Although Karen brought in brownies that she made," he said. "They were pretty good to be honest." He sighed, "and you?"
"My photographer is following me." Peter lied, though there was a truth, so Matt couldn't call bullshit. He's already "warned" the others. Danny was the only one who seemed like he wanted a picture taken - that would get him six hundred bucks!
"Seriously?" Matt asked, unimpressed.
Peter laughed, "don't worry. He won't take pictures of you, or anyone I say to leave alone. He's respectful."
Matt smiled. "Whatever you say, Spider-Man."
Peter was swinging through the city, when he heard yelling. He turned and looked over in an alleyway, and frowned. There was a boy, surrounded by high school bullies, his science project on the ground.
He shot a web, making the kids look up, and he fell, landing in front of them. They stared and rushed off.
"You make this?" Peter asked the small boy, picking up the prject.
"Yeah," grinned the boy.
"This is a wind turbine!" Gushed Peter, smiling. "You made this?" The boy smiled and nodded, and Peter's heart fluttered. He looked so much like a young Peter. "No way. This is amazing." He smiled, and webbed the broken, handmade fan - damn bullies. And, made it a bit stronger. "It's good as new, right?" I'll walk you home." He smiled waved a hand, handing the project over.
The two walked down the alleyway together, with Peter spinning it and ruffling the kids hair.
"What's your name?"
"Jorge?" He got a nod. "I'm Spider-Man."
Peter bumped into Jessica while he was walking Max, "oh! Jessica! How did that Nathan thing go?" He asked, rubbing Max's head.
Jessica eyed the dog, "good. It was murder. Uh, is that Frank's dog?"
"Yeah, I go over like every once in a while and walk his dog," Peter reasoned.
"You do know he’s dangerous?" Jessica asked, tensely.
Peter nodded and shrugged. "Everyone's dangerous in this line of work, but he likes me," he stated simply. (Jessica did not blanch at the nonchalance of it all, thank you very much.)
Jessica sighed. "Fine, just be careful."
"Jeez kid, you're bulking up," Clint laughed, as Peter was aiming his arm, and shooting multiple bullseye's. Seven out of ten, not bad, but he wants full tens.
"Yeah, Deadpool has me on a diet," laughed Peter, snorting.
Clint grinned, "yeah. About that. Why didn't I know?"
"That you knew Deadpool?"
"Oh, it just never came up. Why?"
Clint hands him his phone number on a piece of paper. "Now, bend your knees slightly."
He sent in pictures to the Daily Bugle, and got three hundred.
Peter bought a cheap phone, like dirt cheap. It was scratched with a few buttons missing, and opened the back up. His main thing right now, was trying to find a way to contact Peter Two and Peter Three.
He set a circuit board in the back, and grabbed his tools.
Even if it's calls or texts, it's better than nothing.
Peter swung out to the warehouse, which had trucks and crates, with chains and boxes. It was Harlem, and he was excited. He was going to be training with Luke Cage!
Luke Cage looked over, and nodded softly, "Spider-Man. Good to see you."
"You too!" Smiled Peter, landing in front of him. "So! What are we doing?"
"I want to see how much you can lift up." Mr. Cage said, nodding his head to a few white pick up trucks. "Pick that up, as if you was bench pressing. Then, you will be bench pressing."
Peter nodded, and smiled, "okay!" He slipped under the car, a white pickup truck specifically, and put his hands under it. He lifted it up with ease.
Luke hummed, and lifted another car, and put it on top of it. "How much can you lift?"
"About 50 tons," said Peter, easily holding up the two trucks.
"How did you figure that out?" Asked Mr. Cage, adding another truck on him.
"Uh, a building fell on top of me, I had to lift it off. And, there was the ferry. I had to hold it together until Mr. Stark got there." Explained Peter, without missing a beast.
Mr. Cage frowned, "the suit Stark made you help?"
"With the building, he had taken my suit away from me. I deserve it, after the ferry..."
Mr. Cage added another pickup truck and said, "alright. Bench pressing. I'll spot you."
Peter hummed and began lifting his arms up and down.
"So, what happened with that ferry? I read about it when it happened," Mr. Cage said, hands under the cars to help him.
"Well, I had tracked down some guys who was doing an alien weapon exchange. And, there was a fight and an attack, and the FBI appeared." Peter said, frowning. "Uh, turned out Mr. Stark called them. Told me not to bother with The Vulture."
"Stark didn't tell you?"
"No, but I should have listened — "
"No," said Mr. Cage, tone serious. "He should have told you... Spider-Man... did you blame yourself?"
Peter kept lifting and swallowed, "it was my fault. It was on me — "
"It was on Stark," Mr. Cage said, making Peter look over. "He should have told you."
They worked in silence for a while.
Peter watched the car get closer, then further away, then close, then away. Was... was that ferry thing not his fault? At least, not all of it? It's plagued his mind for years, and now Mr. Cage is telling him it's not his fault.
But... what hurts is... its true. If Mr. Stark had told him, or listened to him then all of that wouldn't have had him.
Peter swallowed, having a sudden realisation, "oh my gosh..." He said, censoring himself out of habit for Matt.
Mr. Cage frowned, "what?"
"It's not my fault..." Peter whispered, remembering Beck. He wanted revenge on Stark, and he got it. "Neither was London."
"What happened there, anyway?" Asked Mr. Cage, looking down.
Peter swallowed, "well... he gave me EDITH, glasses with all the tech in the world. Had weapons with it. Nearly killed a "friend" by accident. And, then I handed it over to Quentin Beck. Mysterio. He was a villain, and I thought he was a good guy. He tricked me. He worked with Mr. Stark, and he wanted revenge for BARF. So, he was going to kill my friends, and was going to attack London. I stopped him, and he died from his own hands... he died with the bullet from the drones."
"He gave a college kid powered glasses, without a lesson?" Mr. Cage asked, as he stopped spotting Peter, his voice coloured in shock.
Pete frowned and nodded, "yeah."
"Kid..." Mr. Cage said, frowning, "you've... you're not at fault. It's... Stark's not a good guy."
And Peter was hit with a sudden thought. He teared up.
Peter's Spider-Sense tingled as he swung through the city. He looked down to see a truck, a ball and a boy and girl, rushing into the street. He swung over, and caught them, just as the truck was about to hit them, horn blaring. He set them on their feet.
Peter shot a web, and pulled the ball back, handing it to one of the dazed kids.
"Hey you guys, no playing in the streets," Peter warned, looking at them with soft eyes.
"Yes Mr. Spider-Man." They said back, dazed.
"See ya," smiled Peter, swinging off, as the two kids cheered.
"Position your hands at the top and bottom of the handle."
Peter listened, and moved his hands, watching Danny in front of him.
"Hold the katana in front of you so it’s perpendicular to the ground."
Peter nodded, and moved it.
"Keep your dominant hand 1 inch from the top of the handle, and wrap your fingers and thumb so they’re on opposite sides of the handle. Place your non-dominant hand at the bottom of the handle before wrapping your fingers and thumb around it."
Peter shifted his hands, and moved his right hand around, his left hand going to the bottom, "okay Sensei..."
"Make sure the backs of your hands face out away from the sword on their respective sides. Keep a grip that’s firm enough so the katana doesn’t slip, but loose enough so you can easily manoeuvre around."
"Don’t touch your hands together or else you’ll cut with a hacking motion and you won’t be as accurate. Keep at least 3–4 inches between them."
Peter shifted his hands.
"Avoid keeping your thumbs on top of the handle since you won’t get a proper grip on the sword."
Peter stuck his thumbs down.
Peter slashed, and his eyes widened, hearing the sharpness slide through the air. "I did it!"
Danny grinned, chest out in pride, "yes, you did!"
Peter and Matt were fighting; well, it was sparring in he middle of the roof.
"I swear to gosh,” Peter said, staring up at the black sky, the stars small and barely there. "Why do you always go for the legs?"
Matt smiled smiled, more like smirked. "Why do you keep forgetting to jump?"
"I’m not forgetting," Peter said, frowning under his mask. "It’s just... difficult, y’know?” He looked over at Matt, and held out a hand, waving it so Matt could sense it. "Help me up."
When Matt offered his hand, Peter grabbed hold, and instead of using it to help himself up, tugged down and over his head. Matt yelped as he fell, flung over Peter, landing hard on the roof. His mouth almost dropped open in shock once he realised what had happened, and Peter laughed. He honest to God, laughed.
"Now that," Peter said, eyes sparkling under his mask, "was well-deserved."
"Rematch," Matt demanded.
Peter grinned, "you’re on."
Peter was stuffing his face with a salad that Wade got him, swinging his legs as the two listened to Eminem, the two rapping together.
"Dude, you need to stop giving me so much, my fridge is full," he assured, waving a hand.
Wade smiled, his chapped and scared lips stretching, "good. I'm glad."
"You fucker, that's been your goal!"
Wade laughed, and rubbed his hands together, "I'm so evil! You're bulking up!"
"Yeah, Luke Cage and I went training yesterday. And, with you making sure I'm eating the right things, I've been getting muscles, and healing faster," smiled Peter, positively beaming.
Wade looked a lot more relaxed, practically seeing Peter smile, "good..."
Peter did pull ups on the metal bar, pulling up and down. Mr. Cage was under him, watching.
"So, what's your name, kid?"
"Spider-Man," answered Peter. At Mr. Cage's disgruntled look, he laughed. "I'd like to keep my identity a secret Mr. Cage. So, no offence..."
Mr. Cage huffed a laugh, "call me Luke."
"Okay, Luke," smiled Peter.
Mr. Cage held a hand out, "give me your phone, kid."
Peter smiled, and attached his web to the phone, and lowered it slowly. He watched as
Mr. Cage Luke took he phone, and punched in a number, "call me."
"Okay Luke," smiled Peter.
He had gotten a thousand dollars from the Daily Bugle. It showed Peter and Danny "fighting" on the rooftop of the dojo, katana's clashing together, (but Danny was more fluid).
The title read; Spider-Man Attacks Civilian!
He didn't care.
Peter sat on the old Avengers Tower with a frown, and rolled his shoulders. He looked out to setting sun with a frown. Such a nice view, and he doesn't want to loose this spot. So, he won't. He's fixing it now.
"Hey Mr. Stark..." Greeted Peter to the air, red and blue spandex covered legs swinging back and forth. "So... I've been moving on with my life... slowly, but surely... I've found new people to hang out with... and I have a job." He said, and looked down.
"You... used me." He said, swallowing. "You wanted a child soldier and you got it. You knew I'd've been Team Cap the whole way if I knew what was going on. And still, when you died, you ruined my life."
"You used me. For your own selfish game. You was a child. Those Accords failed. You never took accountability. You ruined my life. You gave me a suit, and threw me to the wind, and this? This is a much better suit."
"I don't hate you. But, I don't like you either... but, thanks for the old Avengers Tower... it has a neat view."
Peter was in a lab coat, and large goggles, with wedges in his shoes to be able to look taller. He was in Stark Industries.
Aleksei Sytsevich was just another thug in the Russian Mafia that prowled Queens, grasping at dreams of easy money, and headed for a short brutal life. But, then he went missing. Which wasn't weird, but what was weird was the guy he was seen with.
An old-ish guy, with splintered nails, and brown hair and eyes, with thick glasses. Peter had watched the CV footage, and ran a facial recognition scanning and it lead him to Stark Industries.
The scan showed he was a guy called Dr. Ashley Kafka... who was fired a year ago, and seemed to vanish three months into his job hunting. So, going back to Stark Industries was a bit of a let down, and just brought back memories he didn't want to deal with.
He walked down the hallway, and tilted his head, and heard a familiar sound; a heartbeat. Specifically Jessica's.
Peter winced... he needed his mask.
He pulled off the goggles, and pulled out his hidden spider mask from his pocket. He pulled off the goggles, and heard Jessica coming from the hall about a minute up and from the left. He pulled on his mask, once he was sure nobody was around, just as he met up with Jessica, the woman nearly falling and Peter caught her.
"Hi," Jessica gaped, seeing Spider-Man.
"Hi," greeted Peter.
"What are you doing here?" Asked Jessica, "is this your day job?"
"After the trauma with Mr. Stark? No." Laughed Peter, confused. "What are you doing here?"
Jessica dragged Peter into the supply closet, with small squares on so they could look out. "Come here."
Peter looked around, the scent of bleach strong and disgusting, as Jessica shut the door. The two peered out of the dark room.
"She's not here," said a security guard, coming into view.
"Check another floor."
"Yes, sir!" The three rushing away.
Peter's eyes widened, and grinned over at her, "you're in trouble."
"Yeah." Whispered Jessica, tense and annoyed.
"Who's that guy?" Asked Peter, eyeing Jessica.
"Security." Jessica said, "there was an accident in the genomics lab, and they're covering it up. And, a concerned, dying Mother wanted me to find out where he went to. I found out the truth. He was an electrical engineer in the building. And he loved Spider-Man according to his Mother, by the way. He was, like, a fanatic."
"What was his name?" Asked Peter, tense. This is sounding a bit too... familiar.
"Max... Maxwell "Max" Dillon," Jessica said.
"I fell into a vat of electric eels," comes Max's voice.
"I’ve never seen him this powerful," comes Peter Three's confused, and worried voice, tense and shocked.
"It’s the arc reactor, we gotta get it off him!" Called Peter out, from over the harsh winds.
Max glowed brighter, and shook his head, hovering mid-air, "you’re not gonna take this away from me."
"I didn't get love vibes," joked Peter, smiling wirly. "I got more of a "want to kill me with his electricity" vibe."
Jessica looked over sharply, "what?"
"Oh, he becomes a bad guy in an alternate dimension; Electro. Fought him on the Statue of Liberty." Peter said, tense. "Where is he? The body?"
"No idea..." Jessica whispered, tense as well.
"You're gonna wanna check the morgue. Stark Industries has one, about thirty minutes south from here. Fiftieth and Tenth... might have the body there if they're hiding it. And, do me a solid, if you find him, tell me if he's alive or dead..."
Jessica nodded, "sure."
"See, I hate when things like this happen. I like Queens not being submerged into darkness... Staten Island maybe?" Hummed Peter, jokingly.
"What about you?" Asked Jessica. "Why are you here? Same thing?"
"No, no... uh, Aleksei Sytsevich... last seen with a Dr. Ashley Kafka. He was fired a year ago, then disappeared. So, common Russian thug meets a Dr., not a good thing... especially one who seemed to disappear."
Jessica smiled, "you're networks improving..."
"Thanks," preened Peter.
"How did you get in?"
"Fake ID," laughed Peter. "This is the maintenance closet, Jess." Peter said, firing off the nickname, and hoped she wouldn't punch him, (she didn't). "This is the most clichéd hiding place you could've chosen. This is the stupidest hiding place."
"I'm sorry," mocked Jessica, with a grin, hand out and looking to him. "I didn't take us to the Bahamas of hiding places."
Peter laughed and looked out, hearing them closing in. "They're coming back..." Can't hide here all day. "This is the plan. You get to the elevator. I'm gonna distract him, okay?"
Peter gripped her arm before she opened the door, "I need you to promise me, you look to the elevator and don't look back. I'm taking off my mask."
Jessica swallowed, "secret identity, right. I won't look." She promised, nodding, and slipped out first.
Peter pulled off his mask, and checked outside, she was faced away. So, he walked out, and leaned on the wall, he sniffed - coffee. He glanced and shot a web at the coffee cup on a push trolley, the woman not noticing him, and heard the guards walking down the hall.
Peter walked forward, and "accidentally" spilled coffee down the guys front.
"Ooh! God! Damn it!" Screamed the guy, waving his hot, coffee covered hands.
"I'm so..." Began Peter, two more coming. He dragged his hands down the guys body, "I just spilled a hot latte all over your..." He stuck his leg out, and the guard tripped over the leg, as he tied the first guys shoelaces. "I didn't mean to do that." Peter said, as he shot up, hands out, throwing hot coffee in the third guys face. "Oh, no! And you too?"
Second guy had fallen into the trolley, trapped between the two sections, as the second guy covered his eyes.
"I'm sorry." Peter said, turning the first guy, taking off his jacket, pushing him into the wall.
"Miss! Stay right there!" Called the third guy, fighting the trolley.
"Sir," Peter said, gripping the guys arm.
"Just stay right..." The third guy fell again, struggling.
"Wait, wait, wait," Peter gripped guy one and two, twisting their arms.
"Hey! Stop!" Called the second guy, fighting the grip, he and the third guy rushing over, and the elevator closed just in time for Jessica who grinned.
"All right," Peter said, slamming his hand on the back of the first guy. "On your way."
The guy fell, tripping on his shoelaces.
"I'm sorry! I'm all thumbs today!" Apologised Peter, with a grin, walking off down the hallway.
He got a message that night from; PI Jones.
Hey kid, found Max with The Punisher's help. He's dead. Frank made sure. Know it's not your MO, but once you mentioned "bad guy", I had to do something. You're safe.
Peter smiled, and teared up slightly, then typed back; Thanks Jess.
He then went to Mr. Frank and typed out; Thank you for your help with a possible Electro, Frank.
He got a response almost instantly; No problem kid.
"So, I heard Jessica Jones helped you with something, and I heard that you took off your mask around," said Matt, landing next to Peter.
Peter looked up, eyes wide, "she told you? Did... did she... see my face?"
"I asked, she didn't look once," promised Matt.
"So," Peter said, "why are you here? We usually don't meet up on Thursday's..."
Matt shrugged, "I know, but I wanted to make sure you was okay."
Peter smiled, "I'm fine... just — "
"Well, if it ain't Daddy-Devil!"
"Hey Wade!" Called Peter, looking over with a grin..
Daredevil landed with a smile, and nodded, "hey Matt."
"Oh great, you two know each other," scoffed Matt, pinching his nose.
Peter laughed, and looked over, "sorry about Matt, DP. Asking if I was alright."
Wade frowned, "are you okay?" He set down three bags, holding a fourth.
"Yeah... yeah, I'm fine..." Assured Peter, "just... I heard about a guy, who was one of my bad guys, from an alternate dimension. Bad memories." He looked down, sadly. "I just... miss Spidey-Two and Spidey-Three..."
Wade frowned and nodded, holding out the fourth bag, "eat. Got you groceries."
"Dude — "
"No, no! Eat! It's healthy stuff!" Wade said, tapping his foot.
"You're like a Mother-hen," Peter scoffed.
"A title I hold with pride," smiled Wade.
Matt gestured, "so, this is normal?"
"Yep," Peter said.
Matt sighed, "great..."
"Do you miss the Avengers?" Peter asked, after his fifth bullseye in a row.
Clint looked down, and nodded, "yeah. Of course I do... I miss Natasha the most though..." He looked over to Peter, "do you miss the Avengers?"
Peter thought, and looked down, "I only ever talked to Stark... and, that wasn't fun..." He looked over, "I uh... I don't have fond memories... I miss Team Captain America..." He looked down, "you know... I never knew what we fighting about in Germany... and if I knew, I'd have been fighting right next to you, Clint."
Clint frowned, and shook his head, "he should have told you..."
"I know..." Peter said, "I... he... he wasn't a good guy... he had so many daddy issues... and he... he wanted to be my mentor you know that?"
"He did?" Clint asked, no doubt thinking of Kate.
"Yeah..." Peter laughed, "and... he failed..."
Clint placed a hand on his shoulder, "don't worry about it. You're better off now."
You're better off now.
"Yeah," whispered Peter, nodding slightly.
With Clint being so cool, he was fine when he was said that Spider-Man's photographer was following him and taking pictures. He got the okay.
He got nine-hundred dollars for it.
Peter punched Luke's hands, harder than normal, delighted with the fact that he could fight and train.
"How's your week been?" Asked Luke.
Peter shrugged, "looking for a guy."
"And, how's it going?" Asked Luke, head titled.
"I've found a guy..." Shrugged Peter, unsure. "Links up with everything... kind of. Face, accent, from the CV's I've seen. But, he has a powerful armour, permanently bonded to his form, was modelled after the hide of a rhinoceros. So, that's fun... he's been hiding in an abandoned laboratory... I only found out about this yesterday, so I... I'm going to scope it out tonight."
Luke nodded with a slight smile, "good luck Spider-Man."
"Thanks Luke," grinned Peter.
Peter eyed his former apartment with a soft smile, sad and his heart beating painfully. He missed Aunt May, he wanted her back.
"You know, it's so funny. I've been... I've been trying to clean up around here, get organised, and been putting some of Ben's stuff in boxes. And it's so funny, the heavier the box gets, the lighter I feel." Aunt May had said once, a few months after Uncle Ben's death.
"You're throwing his stuff away?" Asked a sad, shocked and worried Peter Parker.
"No. No. God, no. I couldn't do that. It's part of me. I'm just finding a better place for it. I'm gonna take one last look, and I'm gonna put it where it belongs." Her voice said, almost knowingly, as if she knew something was up.
Peter frowned at the box, holding three photo frames.
First thing in the box was the Decathlon jacket, he waved it around, getting dust off of it, and folded it, setting it down. The was folded the cop jacket, right on top of it. Then he set his Dad's briefcase and his Mom's handbag next to each other on the jacket. He then lay Aunt May's puzzle game down as a steady base. He placed MJ's book on top of it, then Aunt May's book next to it, laying her glasses in the side of the box. He lay the Lego pieces out in the box, then topped it off with Ned's hat and Uncle Ben's cop hat.
He re-framed the picture of him, Ned and MJ, and pulled out Aunt May's picture. He framed Uncle Ben's and his parents picture, and set them on his desk.
Okay, time to move on...
Okay, so... Aleksei liked to smash things if the 24 hour open mall had anything to say...
There was Aleksei, in a metal rhino suit. He had heard people mutter about "Rhino", and that "The Rhino is in there". And, there Aleksei stood... in the middle of the top floor of the mall, the area destroyed.
"Mr. Criminal?" Called Peter, making Aleksei turn to him. "Hey, my name is Spider-Man. You can call me Web-Head, you can call me Amazing, just don't call me late for dinner. You get it?"
Aleksei yelled, and swung a fist at him.
"Whoa!" Peter yelled, and landed on the wall. "Not a shaker? Are you a hugger?"
"I am smasher!" Yelled Aleksei, rushing at Spider-Man.
Peter jumped over, and his eyes widened, seeing Aleksei rush the wall, creating a hole. "Oh, okay..."
Aleksei growled, and pounded his fists into the floor, and rushed him, much like a rhino.
Peter glared, "okay then... a rhino... The Rhino..." He rushed forward, and slammed his fist into The Rhino's face, missing the metal parts of his armour, which sent the guy flying back, and landing on his back.
Spider-Man carefully watched The Rhino heave himself up. This was not the move Peter had been expecting, he expected an assassination, not a building destruction. He didn't even know Aleksei had been let loose until after the fact. He's going to have to go back to that lab, and stop this guy.
The Rhino stood, and reeled his fist back, and Peter rushed forward, slamming his fist into an exposed rib, making him skid back and yell in pain. He kicked the guys head repeatedly, and slid under him, and shot a web, pulling him back and slammed his foot into the guys head.
Suddenly, The Rhino slammed Peter into a wall, making Peter gasp and groan, and kick and punch the guy back, sliding under his again, and kicked the guys legs, making him kneel, and slammed a foot and fist into his upper body. He then webbed his head, and pulled, sending a round house kick to his head.
Aleksei slammed his fist into him, which threw Peter into a wall, and picked up a part of the ground, throwing it, and Peter barely had time to roll out of the way, too close. Aleksei kicked him, then jumped on him.
He slammed his big, metal fist down, and Peter caught it, struggling, and groaned under the weight, throwing it off. But, sagged slightly, which was a mistake, as Aleksei slammed his fists into Peter's ribs, and threw him around.
Peter stood and rushed him, and knocked him down, "you're not gonna push people around!" He yelled, kicking and punching, but was pushed back, and picked up. Aleksei spun and slammed Peter down on the ground, and kicked him into a wall.
Peter yelled, feeling his back ache a crater made in the wall, his ribs cracked. He ground, and looked up, as Rhino rushed forward, and smashed into Peter, making the wall crumble, the two in the next room - a karate store? What the...?
He jumped out of the way, behind The Rhino, as Aleksei rushed him, and webbed his face, covering his eyes. A big mistake.
Aleksei took off running, rushing through the hole and fell off the top floor to the bottom floor, landing an a statue - "modern art" - that was bars, and squares. "GET OFF!"
And, Peter did. But, not because he was asked politely. No, because there was a fucking bar straight through his leg. "Oh..." He pulled the bar out, nearly gagging as he felt it pull, and webbed his wound on both sides. He hobbled up.
He dodged as The Rhino rushed him and slammed his fist down, and he attached a web, and slammed his foot into the guys head, then ducked under him, hitting his rib with his fist, then neck, and round house kicked him again, knocking him away.
"Y'know? Fighting you and chasing you, almost feels like a wild goose chase!"
"Goose? No. NO! I hate goose!" Yelled Aleksei, who rushed him, head first.
Peter yelled in pain, as he was rammed back, and his hand went to his stomach. Oh, oh, oh fuck. There's a hole in his stomach... why is there a hole? The Rhino's metal horn was bloody... oh my gosh...
The Rhino threw the welcome desk at him, and Peter barely had time to cartwheel out of the way. He rushed forward, and slammed a fist straight into the guys teeth, and watched as he fell back, and stopped moving.
Peter panted, and webbed the guy up, then rushed out of the mall. He crawled up the side of the next store, running for a while, jumping apartment to apartment, before collapsing.
He looked down to his stomach and sobbed slightly, "oh fuck..." He fell down, struggling to breathe, nose in pain, and glanced around, where is he?... outside of Chinatown? Huh...
He reached into his secret pocket, which was very hard to make thank you very much, and called the first contact he saw through bleary eyes.
The person answers on his fourth ring, "hello there gorgeous! How may I make your sexual fantasies come true today!"
"Wade?" Panted Peter, "thank fuck! It's Spidey. I'm on some rooftop, about twenty minutes outside of Chinatown. And I need a place to crash and not bleed out in!"
"Well, fuck me sideways..." Wade said, worried. "I'm gonna call Matt, so we can find you, then help ya?" Deadpool said, not panicked at all, totally not.
"Okay..." Gasped Peter, it agony. He heard the disconnect click and dropped the phone.
Wade had been on a Mercenary Mission, so when he had gotten a call he was going to ignore it. However, he recognised the tune of Star Wars, which was Peter's ringtone, and answered instantly. And, no he's glad he did.
Currently, he was trying to not freak out. He moved onto Matt's contact and called him.
"What do you want, Deadpool," Matt asks, in a drawl and tense tone. He did not sound happy, but Wade was going to make it worse.
"Spidey's been hurt," Wade said, tense and serious, running. "He's somewhere, twenty minutes outside of Chinatown, call that Ninja Guy! Get there now!"
"Fuck, on it," Matt quickly hanging up.
Wade then called Clint, who picked up a few seconds later.
"Hey Wade — "
"Spider-Man's hurt! Come pick me up! I'm heading to our hideout in Bronx!" Wade yelled, panicked and feeling like he's aged ten years.
"All right, coming!" Clint called, sounding like he was getting up, and hanged up.
Matt ran across the building rooftops. He was panicked, he never expected to see another vigilante as his protégé, or as his kid in a weird way. He knew Spider-Man was young, about twenty three or so, but... that's still his kid.
He pulled out his phone, and called Danny, "come on, pick up, pick up..."
"Heya Matt!" Answered Danny, all perky and happy, "how've you been — ?!"
"Spider-Man's hurt, just outside China Town, I'm getting Claire, calling Jess, Deadpool'll be there!"
Danny fell silent, "Spidey's hurt..." He muttered in shock, "my students be hurt... holy shit... I'll close up, want me to find him — "
"I'm already look," Matt said, hiding his shock that Spider-Man was one of Danny's students. "Just be ready!" He hung up and called Claire, desperately.
"What've you broken now?" Came Claire's voice, picking up on the first ring.
"Not me, Spider-Man. He'll be at Danny's Dojo, think you can make it?" Asked Matt, definitely not worried. Nope, not at all...
Claire cursed, "shit. I'll be there." She hung up.
Matt immediately called Jessica, he's going to need a ride.
She picked up after a few rings. "What?" She asks, clearly annoyed.
"Spidey's been hurt, somewhere outside of Chinatown. I'm gonna need you to pick us up. Can you do that?" He demanded, though he didn't think there'd be an argument.
"Fuck. I'll be there. Just let me know where to go," she replied.
Matt said, "right." Then hung up. He's got a protégé to find.
Jessica Jones is not sober right now, she could risk it, be she loves the kid too. Whiskey that taste like paint thinner is the best drink out there, and she had too much. Give her a break, she did. She remembered Spider-Man saying he knew Frank Castle, and so she called The Punisher immediately, (she'd stolen from Spider-Man's phone).
He picks up after a few rings. "What do you want, Jones?"
"Spider-Man's hurt." She says, trying to sound normal. "Come pick me up, and drive us to wherever Matt says, I am not sober enough." She said, quickly.
"Fuck," hissed Frank.
Claire was rushing around her apartment, with her on and off again boyfriend (?) Luke Cage, watching her rush around.
"What's wrong?" He asked, tense. Danny? Matt? Jessica? They're not family, and barely class as friends, but he still cares about them. Not worries, he doesn't really worry, they're fine.
Claire looked over, "Chinatown. Spider-Man. Danny's Dojo."
He takes it back, he's worried. "The kid's hurt?" He asked, standing, "I'm coming with you." He knew he was going after Aleksei soon, so he must have hit the guy up tonight.
"I know him, I'm coming with you," Luke said, helping her pack.
And, who was Claire to argue?
Matt was three blocks into the East Side of Chinatown and couldn't hear anything yet. He kept moving, and finally, there was that faced paced, humming heartbeat, much like a meta-human, mixing with that of a twenty year old kid, coming about ten minutes away. He ran, he never paused, and never stopped.
He got to Spider-Man's block in five minutes and followed the scent of web chemicals to where he was. He climbed the stairs of a fire escape, going as quickly as he could.
He paused on the roof. Spider-Man was bleeding heavily, but was conscious.
"Double D?" Peter mumbled, hearing the guys heartbeat, lips split.
"Spidey, thank gosh. You've got four broken ribs, don't move. We’ll get you treated," Matt said, using his smooth voice, rather than rough voice.
He knelt next to him, and went to press on the wound, but stopped. "It's a hole..."
Peter hissed, feeling the fingers prod, "yep..."
Matt swallowed, "Jessica is coming, Wade is also coming, and we're getting you to Iron Fist's Dojo, Claire Temple is our nurse, and is going to meet us there."
"Danny?" Smiled Peter, excited. He has a new billionaire in his life.
"Yeah, Danny... how do you know him?" Matt asked, confused.
"Swinging through Chinatown, we met each other that way. Teaches me to meditate and how to use a katana," Peter said, knowing he had to stay awake, talking, even if it hurt.
"Oh..." Matt nodded, and pulled out his phone, calling Jessica.
She picked up on the first ring.
"We’re on sixtieth and twenty-third," Matt said. "How soon can you be here?"
Jessica was talking to someone else, before turning to Matt. "We’ll be there in a few. How's he?" She asked, tense and fake casual.
"There's a hole in his stomach." Matt said, high strung and worried.
"What?! We need to get him to a hospital!" Jessica said, loudly.
"No! No hospitals!" Called Peter, and groaned.
"He's right, none..." Matt said, tense.
"Fine... see you soon," she said, hanging up.
Matt put the phone back into his pocket, before reaching into his pocket and pulling out a bandage, then began wrapping. Peter moaned, it stung and it was throbbing. Matt ignored it. His stomach at how much pain his poor kid was in.
It felt like hours. Matt listened, and picked up on the scent of paint thinner - Jessica. Peter was going slack.
"How's college?" Asked Matt, heart racing.
Peter frowned, before he vaguely remembered everyone thought he was a college kid. In his early twenties. "Fine," he semi-lied. His GED is going fine. "It hurts so much..."
"I-I know... I know..." Matt swallowed. "Uh... any girlfriends? Or, boyfriends? Or, partners?"
"Ex-girlfriend..." Peter said, thinking of MJ. "Being Spider-Man and dating doesn't really equal good..."
"Yeah," Matt nodded. He focused to check, and heard the car Jessica was in, was less than a block away. "You're gonna have to stand, and we gotta get you to the Dojo. No doubt Danny is worried," he said, gently.
"This is gonna hurt like a motherfucker," grumbled Peter, annoyed.
"I know, just lean on me," Matt said. He shifted up, and readied himself.
Peter took a quick breath, psyching himself up, and nodded. He up, and wrapped his arms around Matt's shoulder. Matt could hear the bones grinding, and it made him sick. He managed to keep them steady, depsite wanting to throw up. He slowly stood up, bringing Peter with him.
Eventually, they were fully standing.
"That's it," whispered Matt.
They were only standing for a second, before the two heard a car park quickly. Then came Jessica's boots, rattling up the fire escape. She quickly got over the edge and rushed to the youngest vigilante dressed in red.
"You're gonna need to help," groaned Matt under the weight.
Peter couldn't help him, his uninjured leg was tired, as he had used it too much during the fight.
"Spidey. Let's get you outta here." She said, gently lifting him like a picky back ride.
Peter hated this, he felt so small, so tiny. He vaguely thought of himself, as Peter Parker, not Spider-Man, just plain old Peter, and yet again thought; Am I too you for this?
She was so careful, as she began walking down the fire escape, careful not to nudge him. Even still, Peter's teeth were clenched so he didn't scream. It felt like this teeth was going to snap. Matt followed them down, right behind in case Peter slipped.
Jessica took them to a broken up truck.
And Frank was driving. Matt decided not to argue, as he was too wrapped up worrying about his kid.
He and Jessica helped Peter climb into the car and Peter's head in Matt's lap. She shut the door.
"Danny's Dojo," Matt said, as he buckled in.
"Hmm," Frank pulled ou the map and began driving.
"Hey Mr. Frank," Peter whispered out.
"Hey kid." Frank said, in an impossibly soft voice, and started driving. "Max misses you."
"I miss Max," smiled Peter. He just wanted slobbery dog kisses until the end of time. Peter closed his eyes, relaxing, and Peter knew he was relaxing too much, but he couldn't help it.
Frank was definitely going over the speed limit, he was going as fast as he safely could, and before long they were pulling up in front of the dojo, with a car in front of it.
Frank turned off the car and got out.
Jessica got out, and opened his door. Matt helped him, so he wouldn't fall out, which Peter guessed would just be his luck. Jessica carefully heped Peter stand, and he groaned in pain. Everyone around him grimaced, as he leaned on Jessica.
The other car opened and out came... Hawkeye.
"Is that.. is that Hawkeye?" Matt asked.
"Clint?" Peter asked, wuinting over.
"Spidey!" Clint called from where he was leaning, rushing over. "Holy shit!" He said, a tad bit hysterical.
Wade followed from the other side of the car, "WHAT THE FUCKING SHITBALLS HAPPENED?!"
"The Rhino," grumbled Peter, in pain, as they all moved to the dojo.
"Who?!" Asked Clint, freaking out, he and Wade surrounding the kid, with Matt, Wade, Frank and Jessica.
"Don't worry about it," tried Peter, waving a weak, limp hand.
Another car pulled up, and out came Luke Cage, rushing over to the swarm of vigilantes surrounding Spider-Man. "Oh God! Spidey! What happened?" He asked, eyeing the hole.
"Aleksei... Rhino," groaned Peter. "Nice to see you Luke..."
"You too kid," Luke said, eyeing Claire, who was rushing over. He ran forward, and forced the door to the dojo open.
Danny looked up from his pacing, having been muttering to hmself and unable to meditate, and rushed over upon seeing his student, "Spidey!"
Peter looked up tiredly, "hey Danny..."
"What happened?" Danny asked, as he led the to a very clean section of the dojo.
"Aleksei... big Rhino suit... horn stabbed me..." Peter groaned in, and gasped sharply as Frank and Jessica lay him on his back, and Clint sat, and let Peter rest his head on his lap.
"You look terrible Spidey," Wade said, worried, as he pulled off his mask completely, not bothered who saw. "Worse than my ugly mug. He got your stomach and leg?"
"No a bar in my leg..." Peter said, pulling a vial. "Web Disolver."
Matt pulled off his mask, and took it, before hastily handing it to Frank, in fear he'd miss.
Claire walked in, "what happened?" She repeated, pulling out her medical kit, and knelt. "Anything I should know?"
"I heal fast... uh... fast metabolism." Peter said, thinking, "uh... like... took a bottle of Tylenol and it finally shifted my headache fast." He thought more, "uh... yeah, it was a metal slab in the shape of a rhino horn for my stomach. Bar in my leg. I think my nose is broken - again."
Claire frowned, "head injured..."
"More than likely."
Claire reached for his mask, but Peter's hand shot out, faster than he's shown since before he collapsed, and grabbed her wrist in a gentle, yet tight grip, before she could remove it.
"Aw, that’s a no-no. Mask stays on," Peter said, in pain and breathy. "Sorry, Ma'am..."
"It's Claire. Look, I know everyone's identity. Now, I’m gonna take off your mask so I can check for head injuries. Don't stop me from doing my job." She said, annoyed.
"No... I can't..." Peter shook his head, laughing bitterly.
"Kid," Matt all but begged.
"Mysterio. London was nearly shot up, and he died. He told the world I killed him... then he outed my identity to the world, Matt... you represented the guy behind the mask."
Matt blinked, "what...? Why don't I know this?"
"I got off... innocent... but... nobody would take my friends... their lives, my Aunt's life was ruined. So, I went to Stephen Strange, make it so everyone forgot the guy behind the mas was Spider-Man... it failed due to me changing the spell multiple times. It would have cracked the multiverse, which he contained in a box."
"Villains from alternate dimensions, who knew I was Spider-Man in theirs, appeared; Doc Ock, Electro, The Lizard, Sandman and... Green Goblin..." He clenched a hand.
"I had the idea to save them since they die in the other two verses. Cured Otto... and in the process... I lost Aunt May, my only living family member left, who told me that "with great power, there must also come great responsibility". Green Goblin killed her. I ran..."
"Enter Spidey Two and Spidey Three..." Peter looked up, seeing wide eyes staring at him. "We got the cures working. We invited the guys to the Statue of Liberty. We cured them all..."
"Not before Stephen came, and Green Goblin exploded the multiverse... I nearly killed Green Goblin, I wanted to rip him apart. But, Spidey Two stopped me and soon... everyone who knew I was Spider-Man was coming through... it would have destroyed us. I had an idea..."
"To cast a new spell, but this time make everyone forget who the guy behind the mask is. Make everyone forget... me. It worked... and now, my girlfriend, and my guy in the chair have no idea who I am..."
"I cannot risk that..." Peter said, shaking his head. "I just can't..." It hurt. It hurt so much.
It was Frank who said, "if anyone says a thing. I'll kill them."
"As will I, baby boy," grinned Wade.
Jessica nodded, "you trusted me once..."
"I won't even tell the Avengers. Not a soul," Clint promised.
Luke nodded, "I'd die before a say a thing."
"I'm your teacher, I want to know. Therefore, I won't spill," Danny swore.
Matt frowned, "please..."
Peter swallowed, and let go of Claire's wrist. "Hi, I'm Peter Parker... also known as Spider-Man..." He hesitated, and reached up, tugging his mask off, "I'm seventeen..."
It fell silent.
"Holy shit," choked Clint, eyes welling with tears.
"Y-you're a kid," gaped Wade, in horror.
"I think I'm gonna be sick," Frank whispered.
Luke swallowed, "oh God."
Jessica's eyes widened, frowning, "you're actually a kid..."
Danny stared blankly, "you're literally a student..."
"Not even in college..." Matt added, worried.
Frank looked to Claire, "Claire, save our kid..."
Claire swallowed, staring. A rhino man shoved a horn through a fucking kid!
Luke saw her blank, "Claire!" Snapped the man, shoving her softly, "hey, come on!"
"Claire, I swear if you don't wanna die, save him," snapped Clint.
Danny's hands were glowing, "take it easy Peter. I'm gonna help it along, okay?"
Jessica swallowed, "it's gonna hurt. But, don't die."
"If you do die, we'll kill you," Wade said worriedly.
Matt noticed everyone freaking out, and saw Claire blanking, "CLAIRE!" She looked over, "save my fucking kid."
Peter's eyes teared up. They were worried, they cared, they wanted him, as Spider-Man and Peter. They...
"Oh God," Peter said, eyes wide in shock and horror at himself.
Eyes snapped to him, and Claire moved over worriedly. "What's wrong? What happened?"
"I just realised... this is the first time in months... but, I just realised..." Peter looked at them all, with wide, scared eyes, tears streaking down his blotchy face, now a lot smaller, because he is too young for this. "For the first time since November; I don't wanna die..."
Oh... oh, this was so much more than "a kid without friends", or "a kid without a family". Literally "Peter Parker" doesn't exist. He has no one. He's depressed and wants to die, but now? He's just realised he has people, people who care about him.
Frank felt sick, that was Frank Jr. in front of him, and Clint was hysterical, as he has kids, that's his kid right there. Jessica's dealt with child deaths, this is another and feels dread. Danny knows what it's like to loose family, that's him, and felt so sad. Luke's always bubbly with kids, and that's what Peter is - a kid, and he felt panicked. Wade doesn't fuck with kids, yet here one is, dying in front of him and he was riddled with guilt. While Matt, Matt was the one who felt the tears rising, he's done this.
"Miss Claire," sobbed Peter, hysterical and laughing, choked and crying. He was desperate, as he reached for the nearest adult, who just happened to be Frank. "I don't wanna die. Don't let me die! Please!"
Frank immediately took hold of the kid, shushing him softly.
The Rhino just made seven new enemies.
"Claire," choked Matt. "Don't let Peter die..."
That made him sob harder, they want Peter.
Claire schooled herself, and checked his pupils. No concussion, just a busted nose and some bruises.
She trailed her hands up the side of his body and found a four fractured ribs, which she couldn't do much for, so hoped his healing factor was good like he said.
Claire carefully cut through Peter’s pant leg, seeing the webbing. Frank leaned over with the Web Disolver, and poured it on the webs. It fizzled away rather quickly.
"Where did you get this?" Asked Claire, as she wiped the leg as clean as she could.
"I did..." Peter choked, "webs are synthetic... so..." He shrugged.
Claire hummed, and assessed the hole. Nothing too bad. She put in a few stitches before putting wrapping his leg in bandages.
She moved to his stomach, and winced, "Danny..."
Danny moved his hands over the hole, his hands glowing, eyes closed and thoughtful. Concentrating.
Peter winced, feeling the hole shrink, skin growing and sewing together. "Don't do too much, Danny." He said, not wanting the man to pass out.
"I'm fine..." Danny hummed, focusing.
It felt like a warm tingle, gentle and smooth, as it surrounded the major injured area, before it stopped.
Danny was swaying, and went to do more, but Wade stopped him, "don't... we want you awake thanks. I for one would love to meet Peter-pumpkin-eater's other friends..." He said, very panicked for the literal fucking baby, but trying to stay calm.
"He's right," Claire said, "it's fine I can wrap it now..."
Danny nodded, slumping.
Claire got to cleaning, stitching, and wrapping, carefully, eyeing the bleeding wound. Finally, she leaned back and released a heavy sigh.
"He's fine, he's just gotta rest. A couple of months off," she reported.
Everyone in the room relaxed, except for Peter.
"I'll be fine in a couple of days!" He protested.
The adults glared, staring, and Peter met those glares head on.
Claire realised she was now a babysiter to Spider-Man too. This is not what she wanted.
"I was crushed by a warehouse and hit by a bullet train, and died in space, this is nothing!" Assured Peter, waving a weak hand.
Everyone gave concerned noises.
"I'll check in tomorrow to see how healed it is. For now, no unnecessary movement," she ordered.
Peter sighed but nodded, pouting still.
Claire took her leave then and affectionately (note the sarcasm) turned Peter over to seven worried vigilantes who all just saw him almost bleed out, found out he is a kid, and found out for months, he's been suicidal.
"W-what do you do for work?" Asked Luke, worriedly.
"I take glorified selfies of myself for the Daily Bugle..." Peter answered, making Wade snort slightly.
"That can't be much," Jessica said, tense.
"I can barely make rent. Before Wade started feeding me, I was literally starving myself..." Peter admitted.
Frank frowned, "you freezing up at that gun... when I met you... it wasn't PTSD, was it?"
"No... I was hoping they'd shoot..." Peter admitted, looking down.
"No wonder you like meditating," hummed Danny softly.
Clint smiled sadly, "and why Wade's always asking for health tips."
"You did that?" Laughed Peter, weakly.
"Yeah," flushed Wade.
Matt frowned, "what were you doing fighting this guy?"
"He went missing, and I was looking for him. I found him..." Shrugged Peter, frowning. "Like that... I have no idea if the cops got him, or what," he yawned. "C-can I... sleep?"
Wade nodded, "yeah... sleep..."
Peter smiled, and realised, for the first time, he wasn't alone. He closed his eyes, and darkness consumed him, and he welcomed it, no thoughts of death on his mind.
"So... how do we all know Peter?" Asked Wade, nodding his head to the kid, arms crossed. "Because, I know him due to the writer shoving me into the fanfic so I can feed him one a week."
That made no sense, yet perfect sense to everyone. He's Deadpool, and all that.
"He was injured in Hell's Kitchen, patched him up, offered to train him," Matt said.
"Through Matt, kid was good a being a detective. Gave him tips on networking," shrugged Jessica.
Clint swallowed, "saved my protégé. Taught him to aim his webs."
"There was a gunner, I saved him... I think I might have literally, now thought I know he was suicidal." Reasoned Frank, "taught him about guns..."
"That's why he knew what to do when his webs jammed!" Accused Matt, making Frank grin.
"He was swinging through Chinatown and landed on the dojo, I joined him, and he asked for lessons. I gave him lessons," shrugged Danny. "For free... from one vigilante to another..."
"We was in Queens, he was in a burning building. I offered to bulk him up," Luke explained.
"So, what you're tell me is, we all care about this. And, we cared even before today?" Drawled Wade, eyebrow up.
"Apparently," Clint huffed.
"We can't let him go on alone," Frank whispered. "Or, live by himself... he has not food, nothing..."
Matt blinked, "I have an idea..."
Morning rolls around, and Peter's the first one awake. He's been moved to the sofa, a blanket over him, with someone watching him.
"Hey Peter, "how you feeling today?"
"Fine?" Peter sat, sore. "Why are you up? Is it morning?"
"Yes," Luke nodded. "And, we took turns to monitor you."
Peter didn't feel annoyed, if anything he felt relieved, "hey... Mr. Cage?"
Luke smiled, "yeah?"
Peter looked down, and picked at his fingers. "Can... don't let me kill myself..."
Luke's smile fell, and he moved to the sofa, and held the boy in his arms, "I won't let you kill yourself." He promised, solemnly.
People piled in slowly, trickling in, with Wade and Clint going to cook up a storm.
Matt sat next to Peter on the floor, "hey Peter."
"Hi Matt," greeted Peter, softly, heart thundering and nervous.
Matt hugs hims, neither know why, but... Peter nearly cried all over again, and hugged back. They're just like Aunt May's hugs, solid, tight, firm, squeezing and comforting.
Clint and Wade stumbled passed, ruffling his hair, and went to make food with Danny close behind to help and direct them.
When Frank and Jessica came out of the spare rooms, the smell of waffles, eggs, sausage, hash browns, and bacon filtered the air.
Once Clint, Wade and Danny were finally happy with their breakfast food, Clint yelled, "alright guys! Come get some! Except you Pete!"
They all heard a teenage groan of annoyance and smiled.
Clint piled on waffles, bacon, sausage, eggs, and fruit on to three plates, rivalling what he used to see Steve eat, while everyone else started making their own. He walked into the living room and placed one on the coffee table, and handed the other to Peter.
Peter immediately started shoving food in his mouth and sighed in contentment, moaning around the food.
Once Danny returned to the room, Clint went and made his own plate. Soon, everyone was back scattered around, eating happily.
Matt coughed, "uh Peter..."
"That's me..." Peter smiled, eating.
"Uh... look... we don't want you to be running around, and in that apartment alone. So... do you wanna... come live with me?" Matt asked, not sure how to word it without out right saying "come live with me".
Peter paused, and looked up from his food, "what?"
"We don't want you alone..." Frank said, instantly.
Jessica nodded, "you're so young, and you need people in your life..."
Peter looked to Matt, and swallowed. "Everyone I love dies Matt, I'm cursed. It's the Parker Luck."
"No... see... I have something called Murdock Luck — " Matt started.
"It's true, he does," added Danny, hand raised.
Matt nodded, "see? So, our bad luck'll just cancel each other out."
"But, you could die..." Peter said, tense, "because of me..."
"A risk we'd all take," Luke said suddenly. "We care about you."
Matt shrugged, "if not me, someone else..."
"I can't just live alone?"
"Not anymore!" Sang Wade.
"I can... still be Spider-Man?" Asked Peter, carefully.
"Of course," Matt promised.
Peter thought, and chewed his lower lip, "... okay..."
At that, that one simple word, everyone relaxed instantly at that. Like someone had shifted a weight.
Just as Peter finished eating, there was a knock at the door. Everyone tensed and look to Matt, who was relaxed. They took the cue and relaxed in turn.
"Who is it?" Wade called in a cheery voice.
"Claire," she replied through the door.
Wade skipped to the door and throwing it open. "Hi-Diddly-Ho, Neighborino! Petey-pie is right through there."
Claire stepped inside, and walked over to Peter, mask-less and in pyjama's. It made him seem even younger. "You're gonna keep being Spider-Man," she said.
"Yep," smiled Peter.
"Figured. Alright, let's get started," she said.
She double checked him for a concussion, felt his ribs, then took off his leg dressings. The wound was mainly a scab now. Everyone in the room sighed with relief. Claire re-bandaged it.
She checked the stomach wound and everyone winced. It had barely healed.
Once she was all set, she pulled off her gloves and stood up. She faces all seven vigilantes who are watching her like nervous parents.
"His leg will probably be completely healed in a couple days. His ribs will probably be good to go in a few hours," she said.
There were sighs of relief.
"But, his stomach wound will take longer. A week at most..." Claire warned, and Peter sagged.
"Thank you so much Claire," Matt said.
"Uh-huh. Bye kid, feel better," she smiled to Peter, as she headed to the door.
Peter smiled, "bye Miss Claire!" And, waved as she left. "See? I'm all better," he said.
"Uh huh. Tell me that again when you're no longer have a hole in your stomach," Matt said, unimpressed.
"Fine. But I'm fine enough to walk and stand," Peter said. He got up, and spun, and a slight bow.
Frank chuckled. Luke snorted. Danny clapped.
"Okay, fine," Matt admitted. "But no Spider-man for two weeks."
"What?! I'm 50% fine," Peter complained.
"Listen, you're a self-sacrificing idiot, you're not going out," Matt replied, like a stern Father.
Peter sighed, but he knows it's probably for his own good, "fine..."
Staying with Matt was nice, besides the billboard, but he ate everyday, he was warm, it was perfect. He met Foggy and Karen, two lovely civilians and Matt's best friends - they remind him of MJ and Ned, and Matt was tensing up for a relapse and a spiral. Neither came.
Peter was bed bound, and Matt was carefully following the diet plan Wade and Clint gave him. Wade still came round once a week for take out, Frank brought Max a few times, Jessica gave him a case or two, Danny and him meditated, Luke came for a chat, Clint came and watched television, it was good.
Peter was on his second week of bed rest, his stomach nearly completely healed, a pink line still there, and he was watching the news on Matt's sofa, since the guy got a television just for him.
"Russian gangster Aleksei Sytsevich was broken out of a classified penitentiary known simply as the Vault by an unknown team of men. It's yet another example of increased criminal activity in Queens since the disappearance of Spider-Man two weeks ago. The web-slinger's absence has left a hole in the heart of the city. Believe it or not, even the New York City Police Department has joined the chorus of New Yorkers in hoping for the return of the web-slinger. The entire world seems to be asking the same question: Where is Spider-Man?"
Peter scoffed, "right here. In bed rest..." He sighed, and slouched into the television.
"I'm here live on Park Avenue and 56th Street where it is complete chaos." Said a news reporter. "A man in some sort of weapon armoured suit is wreaking havoc on Midtown! Hawkeye, Daredevil, Deadpool, Jessica Jones, Luke Cage, Iron Fist and The Punisher is here to try and take of this... weapon!"
"I am the Rhino! I told you I would be back!"
"Yeah! And you pissed off seven super powered vigilantes when you went after our kid!" Roared Deadpool, katana raised.
Peter's eyes widened, "well shit..." He had to get there fast, injured or not. Matt's just gonna have to kill him.
The vigilantes stood in a line, staring The Rhino down. The Punisher had a gun in each hand, Matt had his billy clubs out, Deadpool had his katana's out, Iron Fist's fists were glowing slightly, Hawkeye had his bow and arrow pointed, Jessica Jones and Luke Cage was at either side of the line. A person was missing; Spider-Man. He should have been front and centre. Right in between Deadpool and Daredevil.
Jorge watched, dressed in a Spider-Man outfit. His Mama bought it from Party City, and it was the best gift he had ever gotten. They needed a hero, and yes, these guys are all well and good, but they're not Spider-Man.
So, taking initiative in his little boy brain, Jorge ran forward, passed the boarders and adults.
"No! No!" Screamed his Mama, reaching out as the cops stopped her.
"A kid! Hold your fire! Everybody, hold your fire." Called the police that had been frantically shooting. "Unit 2, stand down. Stand down."
"Civilian in our line of sight."
"Kid! You gotta get..." The Rhino threw a piece of concrete at the officer.
Deadpool's heart did not thunder when he saw a kid stand in the spot of Spider-Man. Nope, not at all.
Daredevil sensed the kid, he was scared, but damned braved.
The Punisher was tenser now, a kid was here, and if The Rhino made one wrong more, he was going to get trigger happy.
Jessica Jones and Luke Cage eyed the boy, thinking of their actual Spider-Man. Thought thankful he was not here, wished he was so this boy wouldn't be in the line of fire. Brave kid though.
Iron Fist swallowed, seeing this boy, this small kid, looking ready to go one to one with The Rhino.
"Look, New York! Spider-Man is back." Mocked The Rhino - in their eyes he didn't deserve a name.
"Leave the kid alone!"
"That's my baby! Please." Cried Jorge's Mama.
"Brave boy. Huh? Does Aleksei scare you, little boy?" Mocked The Rhino, moving forward, but stopped, a look of horror passing his face.
Jorge turned, and blinked. He pulled off his mask, and smiled, seeing Spider-Man, the Spider-Man standing in front of him. "I knew you'd come back!
"Yeah. Thanks for stepping up for me, and protecting my friends." Grinned Spider-Man, not sparing his coworkers a look. (They had aged tens years seeing Spider-Man, despite him being on bed rest.) He knelt down, "you're the bravest kid I've ever seen. We're gonna take care of this jerk. You go take care of your Mom. Okay?" Spider-Man said, fist out.
Jorge nodded, smiling, giving a fist bump back.
"All right, get out of here. Go. Go." Smiled Spider-Man, ruffling his hair, and stood, watching the boy trun to his sobbing Mother.
Spider-Man looked to the others, "be angry later. Rhino Guy to deal with." He grinned, moving to a cop car, grabbing a megaphone.
"We'll take your lead," Daredevil said, now knowing how Foggy and Karen felt with him.
"You fight me? You fight me now? Huh?" Called The Rhino, angrily.
"Ugh! He's as bad as me!" Whined Deadpool.
"Never thought ut'd be possible," scoffed The Punisher.
"On behalf of the fine people of New York City and real rhinos everywhere, I ask you to put your mechanised paws in the air!" Spider-Man called, into the megaphone.
"Never! I crush you! I kill you!"
"Can you say more than crush and kill?" Spider-Man drawled, making Hawkeye snort.
"I destroy you!"
"You want me to come down there so you can destroy me?" Asked Spider-Man, eyebrow raised.
The Vigilantes shared looked with each other, before sharing grim grins, and Spider-Man was one of those grins.
"I'll be right there." Spider-Man promised, as cheering the surrounded the area. He threw the megaphone, and landed in the middle of Daredevil and Deadpool. "Ah... there's no place like home."
He rushed forward, followed by Deadpool and Daredevil, flanked by Iron Fist and The Punisher, and behind them was Jessica Jones and Luke Cage. The Rhino yelled, and rushed forward, seeing the vigilantes jump at him, as he threw a manhole cover.
Spider-Man caught it, and swung back, spinning in the air, successfully landing the first hit, ready to start his new life, and to live.